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NEWS:

What You Need To Know About The Delta Variant

For more than 40 years, UCI infectious disease researcher Michael Buchmeier has studied coronaviruses, and he’s one of the leading experts on SARS-CoV-2, the version of the virus causing the COVID-19 pandemic. As a more lethal mutation of the virus, called the delta variant, sparks another wave of cases, he offers his expertise about this threat.

How does the delta variant differ from the original form of the COVID-19 coronavirus?

The form of the original coronavirus is really not clear. If, as we think, SARS-CoV-2 appeared in humans after jumping from an animal host, such as a bat, then the sequence may have already contained mutations in its genome that allowed that species jump. Many of the so-called emerging diseases represent jumps from a zoonotic animal host to humans.

The power of this genetic flexibility is characteristic of RNA viruses. This flexibility results in the produ

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SIR Publishes New Position Statement And Quality Improvement Document On Percutaneous Lung Ablation

The Society of Interventional Radiology (SIR) issued a new position statement on percutaneous lung ablation. The position statement was published in the August issue of the Journal of Vascular and Interventional Radiology (JVIR) with an accompanying quality improvement document, which establishes performance thresholds for patient safety.

“Minimally invasive, image-guided thermal ablation offers patients with early stage, non-small-cell lung cancer, recurring lung cancer, and metastatic disease a safe and effective treatment option,” said Mark Baerlocher, MD, SIR’s standards division councilor and an author of the position statement and quality improvement document.

“The two publications provide physicians with guidance on everything from patient selection to treatment delivery and post-treatment care and follow-up, ensuring high-quality care that improves patients’ lives,” said Baerlo

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Driving With Heart Disease: Checking Fitness To Drive

People suffering from various types of cardiovascular disease are subject to a certain accident risk when driving a vehicle on the road. High blood pressure, coronary heart disease and cardiac insufficiency might be grounds for a (temporary) driving ban. Numerous diseases are capable of causing traffic accidents and therefore impact personal and public safety. In a publication, cardiologist Thomas Pezawas from MedUni Vienna has summarised the relevant diseases, thereby providing an overview for those affected and their treating physicians. Palpitations and dizziness can also occur in those recovering from COVID-19.

"Although only between 1 and 5% of sudden cardiac deaths occur while people are driving, even a brief black-out at the wheel can have fatal consequences," explains study author Thomas Pezawas from the Department of Medicine II (Division of Cardiology). "People with heart dis

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Full-Dose Blood Thinners Reduce The Need For Organ Support In Moderately Ill Covid-19 Patients, But Not In Critically Ill Patients

A large clinical trial conducted worldwide shows that treating moderately ill hospitalized COVID-19 patients with a full-dose blood thinner reduced their need for organ support, such as mechanical ventilation, and improved their chances of leaving the hospital. However, the use of this treatment strategy for critically ill COVID-19 patients requiring intensive care did not result in the same outcomes. The formal conclusions from the trial, which was supported in part by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), part of the National Institutes of Health, appear online in The New England Journal of Medicine.

“These results make for a compelling example of how important it is to stratify patients with different disease severity in clinical trials. What might help one subgroup of patients might be of no benefit, or even harmful, in another,” said NHLBI Director Gary H. Gibbons,

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