Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Surgery for December 2019. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Incidence of Early-Onset Gastric Cancer Increasing in the U.S.

TUESDAY, Dec. 31, 2019 (HealthDay News) — The incidence of early-onset gastric cancer has been increasing in the United States, and it seems to be distinct clinically and genetically from late-onset gastric cancer, according to a study recently published in Surgery.

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Endoscopic Approaches Feasible in Surgery for Sinonasal Cancer

TUESDAY, Dec. 31, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Endoscopic approaches are feasible for the surgical resection of sinonasal cancer, according to a study published online Dec. 24 in Head & Neck.

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Intervention Cuts Preoperative Anxiety in Young Children

MONDAY, Dec. 30, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Among children undergoing elective day surgery, a brief, targeted Child Life preparation (CLP) intervention reduces preoperative anxiety prior to intravenous induction of anesthesia, according to a study published online Dec. 23 in Pediatric Anesthesia.

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Gastric Sleeve Tied to Lower Risk for Subsequent Procedures

MONDAY, Dec. 30, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Patients undergoing vertical sleeve gastrectomy (VSG) appear to be less likely than matched patients undergoing Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) to experience subsequent abdominal operative interventions, according to a study published online Dec. 18 in JAMA Network Open.

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Changes Needed to Address Out-of-Network Billing at Hospitals

FRIDAY, Dec. 27, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Requiring hospitals to sell a package of facility and physician services would protect patients from out-of-network bills at in-network hospitals, according to a report published online Dec. 16 in Health Affairs.

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Liposuction Benefits Women With Lipedema

FRIDAY, Dec. 27, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Liposuction improves the quality of life for women with lipedema, according to a study published in the December issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

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Prescribing Practices Can Mitigate Opioid Overdose Risk for Teens

FRIDAY, Dec. 27, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Older teens may have similar risk factors for prescription opioid overdose as adults, according to a study published online Dec. 16 in JAMA Pediatrics.

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Recall of Pacemaker in Nov. 2015 Was Delayed Unnecessarily

FRIDAY, Dec. 27, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Recall of a cardiac resynchronization therapy pacemaker, which occurred in November 2015, was delayed unnecessarily, according to a report published online Dec. 20 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Bariatric Surgery in Teens May Cut Diabetic Kidney Disease Risk

FRIDAY, Dec. 27, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Among obese adolescents with type 2 diabetes, metabolic bariatric surgery is associated with decreased rates of hyperfiltration and elevated urinary albumin excretion (UAE), according to a study published in the January issue of Diabetes Care.

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Psychological Safety at Work Tied to Hospital Infection Prevention

THURSDAY, Dec. 26, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Hospitals reporting high levels of psychological safety in their work culture are more likely to have comprehensive infection prevention and control programs, according to a study published in the January issue of the American Journal of Infection Control.

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Many Hospitals Fail to Provide Instructions for Patient Portals

THURSDAY, Dec. 26, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Many hospital patient portals fail to educate patients fully and set expectations for secure messaging, according to a study recently published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

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Patients OK With Use of Checklist Prior to Induction of Anesthesia

THURSDAY, Dec. 26, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Anesthesia providers rate patient discomfort from use of checklists prior to anesthesia induction much higher than do patients, according to a study published online Dec. 12 in the European Journal of Anaesthesiology.

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Patient Share of Out-of-Network Costs Rising

TUESDAY, Dec. 24, 2019 (HealthDay News) — The out-of-pocket costs for out-of-network (OON) care grew rapidly for privately insured Americans from 2012 to 2017, according to a study published in the December issue of the American Journal of Managed Care.

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Transplant Outcomes Similar With Lungs From ‘Increased-Risk’ Donors

TUESDAY, Dec. 24, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Using lungs for transplant from donors who are considered at high risk for certain infectious diseases has similar one-year outcomes for recipients compared with using lungs from standard-risk donors, according to a study recently published in the Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery.

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ASTRO Issues Recs for Radiation Tx of Basal, Squamous Cell Carcinoma

TUESDAY, Dec. 24, 2019 (HealthDay News) — In an executive summary of an American Society for Radiation Oncology clinical practice guideline, published online Dec. 9 in Practical Radiation Oncology, recommendations are presented for the use of radiation therapy (RT) for basal cell carcinoma (BCC) and cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (cSCC).

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Enrollment in Affordable Care Act Holds Steady for Third Straight Year

MONDAY, Dec. 23, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Enrollment in Affordable Care Act coverage for next year has surpassed 8 million, a sign that many Americans still turn to the government health insurance program to help pay for their medical care.

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Biomarker May Predict Cardiac Risk in Noncardiac Surgery

MONDAY, Dec. 23, 2019 (HealthDay News) — The preoperative level of N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) is associated with vascular death and myocardial injury after noncardiac surgery (MINS), according to a study published online Dec. 24 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Private Care Program for U.S. Vets Gets $8.9 Billion in Budget Deal

THURSDAY, Dec. 19, 2019 (HealthDay News) — A controversial program meant to get more U.S. veterans to use private health care received $8.9 billion as part of a government spending bill approved by the House.

AP News Article

Variability in Lumbar Fusion Surgery Driven by Patient Factors

THURSDAY, Dec. 19, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Variations across hospitals and surgeons in patient-reported outcomes following elective lumbar fusion surgery are mainly driven by differences in patient populations undergoing surgery, according to a study published online Dec. 4 in Spine.

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Treatment for Younger Adults With CRC Improved Under ACA

THURSDAY, Dec. 19, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Implementation of the Dependent Coverage Expansion (DCE) under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) increased early-stage colorectal cancer (CRC) diagnosis and receipt of timely adjuvant chemotherapy for surgically resected stage IIB to IIIC CRC among DCE-eligible patients, according to a study published online Dec. 19 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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FDA to Allow States to Import Prescription Drugs From Other Countries

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Federal health officials have unveiled plans to allow prescription drug imports from Canada and other foreign nations.

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Obesity, Smoking Do Not Impact Long-Term Healing of Wrist Fractures

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Excellent clinical and radiographic outcomes can be achieved with surgery for displaced wrist fractures in patients who are obese and in those who smoke, according to a study published in the December issue of the Journal of Hand Surgery.

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Spine Surgery Safely Performed in Some Very Elderly Patients

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) — In a carefully defined cohort of patients aged 80 years and older undergoing spine surgery, perioperative complications occurred in 20 percent, according to a study published online Dec. 17 in the Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine.

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Cannabis Use Disorder May Up Risk of Perioperative Heart Attack

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Active cannabis use disorder is associated with an increased perioperative risk of myocardial infarction, according to a study published in the December issue of Anesthesiology.

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New Rules Seek to Increase Organ Transplants in U.S.

TUESDAY, Dec. 17, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Two new rules meant to increase organ transplants in the United States have been proposed by the federal government.

AP News Article

Frailty May Worsen Outcomes in Traumatic Spinal Cord Injury

TUESDAY, Dec. 17, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Frailty is an important predictor of worse outcome after traumatic spinal cord injury (tSCI) in patients <75 years of age, according to a study recently published in the Journal of Neurotrauma.

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Outcomes Worse for Rural Residents With Chronic Conditions

MONDAY, Dec. 16, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Rural Medicare beneficiaries with complex chronic conditions have higher preventable hospitalization and mortality rates than their urban peers, which is partially explained by reduced access to specialists, according to a report published in the December issue of Health Affairs, a theme issue on rural health.

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Cesarean Section Not Linked to Obesity in Offspring

MONDAY, Dec. 16, 2019 (HealthDay News) — There is no association between elective or nonelective cesarean section with obesity in young adulthood, according to a study published online Dec. 6 in PLOS Medicine.

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Results Mixed for Twice-Daily APBI in Early Breast Cancer

MONDAY, Dec. 16, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Accelerated partial breast irradiation (APBI) delivered twice per day over one week to the tumor bed is noninferior to whole breast irradiation for preventing ipsilateral breast tumor recurrence (IBTR), but moderate late radiation toxicity and adverse cosmesis were more common with this regimen, according to a study published online Dec. 5 in The Lancet.

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Hahn Confirmed as New FDA Chief

FRIDAY, Dec. 13, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Stephen Hahn, M.D., was confirmed as commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in a 72-18 Senate vote on Thursday.

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Organ Transplant Does Not Worsen Prostate Cancer Outcome

FRIDAY, Dec. 13, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Among older men with prostate cancer, an organ transplant is associated with higher overall mortality, but not prostate cancer-specific mortality (PCSM), according to a study published online Nov. 15 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Mental Health Disorders May Affect Hip Arthroscopy Outcomes

FRIDAY, Dec. 13, 2019 (HealthDay News) — For patients with femoroacetabular impingement (FAI) undergoing hip arthroscopy, those with psychological impairment are less likely to achieve a favorable outcome, according to a review published online Dec. 12 in the American Journal of Sports Medicine.

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1999 to 2017 Saw Drop in IBD Hospitalization Rate for Whites

THURSDAY, Dec. 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) — From 1999 to 2017, the hospitalization rate for Crohn disease and ulcerative colitis decreased among non-Hispanic white Medicare beneficiaries aged ≥65 years, but not among non-Hispanic blacks, according to research published in the Dec. 13 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Endovascular AVF for Dialysis Access Shows High Patency Rate

THURSDAY, Dec. 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) — A proximal radial artery endovascular arteriovenous fistula to allow vascular access in patients who require hemodialysis remains highly functional at two years, according to a study recently published online in the Journal of Vascular Access.

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U.S. Primary Care Doctors Face Challenges in Coordinating Care

TUESDAY, Dec. 10, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Physicians from the United States and other high-income countries report difficulties with care coordination, with a substantial proportion of U.S. physicians not receiving timely notification or the information needed from specialists or other sites of care, according to a study published online Dec. 10 in Health Affairs.

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U.S. Health Care Spending Up 4.6 Percent in 2018

TUESDAY, Dec. 10, 2019 (HealthDay News) — In 2018, U.S. health care spending increased 4.6 percent, a faster rate than that seen in 2017, according to a report published online Dec. 5 in Health Affairs.

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2016 to 2019 Saw Increase in Medical Students With Disabilities

MONDAY, Dec. 9, 2019 (HealthDay News) — From 2016 to 2019, there was an increase in the proportion of medical students reporting disabilities, according to a research letter published in the Nov. 26 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Exposure to Air Pollution May Up Mortality After Heart Transplant

MONDAY, Dec. 9, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Exposure to air pollution is associated with increased mortality risk after heart transplantation, according to a study published in the Dec. 17 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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2012 to 2014 Saw 41,185 U.S. Patients With Skin Malignancy

MONDAY, Dec. 9, 2019 (HealthDay News) — From 2012 to 2014, 41,185 patients with a diagnosis of skin malignancy of the head and neck region were identified, mostly with a diagnosis of nonmelanoma skin cancer (NMSC), according to a study recently published in the Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery.

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Rural Population Underrepresented Among Medical Students

FRIDAY, Dec. 6, 2019 (HealthDay News) — In 2017, less than 5 percent of all incoming medical students were rural students, according to a study published in the December issue of Health Affairs, a theme issue on rural health.

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Bariatric Surgery May Raise Risk for Colon Cancer Years Later

FRIDAY, Dec. 6, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Individuals who undergo bariatric surgery may be at increased risk for developing colon cancer years later, according to a study published online Dec. 4 in the International Journal of Cancer.

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Receipt of Surgery for Early NSCLC Varies by County

THURSDAY, Dec. 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) — There is considerable variation across counties in receipt of curative-intent surgery for early-stage non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), according to a study published online Dec. 5 in CHEST.

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Services Affected by Rural Hospitals Joining Health Systems

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) — While affiliating with health systems may boost a rural hospital’s financial viability, the affiliation is often associated with reductions in critical services, according to a study published in the December issue of Health Affairs, a theme issue on rural health.

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Adults Not Living in Metro Areas Have Reduced Access to Care

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Adults not living in metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) are more likely to have reduced access to or use of health care services, according to a study published online Dec. 4 in the National Health Statistics Reports, a publication from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Lower Breast Key Focus Area for Assessing Breast Aesthetics

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) — For assessment of breast aesthetics and symmetry, the key focus areas are the lower regions of the breasts and nipple-areola complex, irrespective of the observer’s sex, according to a study published in the December issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

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Physician Depressive Symptoms Tied to Higher Risk for Medical Errors

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Physicians showing depressive symptoms are at higher risk for medical errors, according to a review published Nov. 27 in JAMA Network Open.

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Implant Survival Poor for Converted ‘Partial’ Knee Replacements

TUESDAY, Dec. 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Total knee arthroplasty (TKA) converted from medial unicompartmental (or “partial”) knee arthroplasty (UKA) has a risk for revision that is threefold higher than that for primary TKA, according to a study published online Nov. 20 in The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

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