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In This Issue

Impacts on care Dr. Laura Petersen directs the Houston Center for Quality of Care and Utilization Studies and is leader on a new research project called Improving Quality and Safety through Better Communication in Patient Aligned Care Teams (PACTs). Research revolution: New model of health services research
A new wave in health services research—involving clinical leaders every step of the way—is spreading in VA. The model is called CREATE: "Collaborative Research to Enhance Transformation and Excellence"...
Key findings Army Veteran Louis Lamp wears an earpiece that is part of a frequency modulation system that helps him hear speech more clearly in noisy settings Trial yields hope for blast-related auditory problems
A recent VA clinical trial highlighted two approaches that appear to be effective for treating auditory problems related to mild traumatic brain injury...


An enlarged cancerous prostate is shown on a CT scan. As part of a large NIH-sponsored study, VA researchers and colleagues have reported the 15-year follow-up results on more than 1,600 men treated for the disease. Prostate cancer trial finds similar long-term outcomes from surgery, radiation
The latest report from a nationwide study of prostate cancer treatment confirms that surgery and radiation both entail serious side effects...


San Diego VA nurse LeAnn Shipp views a mock patient's electronic medical record. VA researchers are developing automated methods to extract information from the records that can be used to improve care. One example: identifying Veterans at risk of suicide. Automated way to identify Veterans at risk of suicide?
Investigators with VA and the University of Washington say sophisticated searches of the free text in VA patients' electronic medical records may be a way to identify those at risk of suicide...


Technology horizons Jan Scheuermann, who has quadriplegia, prepares to take a bite out of a chocolate bar she has guided into her mouth with a thought-controlled robot arm. Research assistants Drs. Brian Wodlinger and Elke Brown watch in the background.  VA plays role in another brain-computer breakthrough
Just six months after scientists with VA and Brown University showed that people with total paralysis could control a robotic arm using only their thoughts, a similar milestone was reported by a group with VA and the University of Pittsburgh...
Ongoing research Dr. Joanne Tobacman, with VA and the University of Illinois, is an expert on carrageenan, a common food additive derived from seaweed. She says it may be a culprit in many chronic diseases. Seaweed suspect
A common 'natural' food additive may be a culprit in chronic disease, says a VA researcher...
Journal scan A physician examines a hip bone X-ray. Researchers say high levels of a protein called cystatin C may signal greater risk for hip fracture in older people.  Protein could signal risk of hip fracture
Study findings from a team with VA and the University of Minnesota suggest a protein called cystatin C may help identify older people at high risk of hip fracture...


A recent VA study on cognitive processing therapy added to the evidence suggesting the therapy is effective for PTSD stemming from military sexual trauma. Study adds to evidence on cognitive processing therapy for sexual trauma
In a study of 73 women and 13 men who had PTSD related to military sexual trauma, VA researchers and colleagues confirmed the effectiveness of cognitive processing therapy, one of two main psychotherapies already used in VA to treat PTSD...


Quercetin, a natural compound found in apples and certain other fruits, appears to boost the effects of a widely used chemotherapy drug. Natural antioxidant bolsters cancer drug
An international research team including a VA scientist has found that quercetin—a powerful antioxidant—extends the power of a widely used cancer drug ...
Ventilator study is first to compare weaning methods
A study by VA researchers and collaborators that compared two ways to wean patients from ventilators—machines that breathe for patients unable to breathe on their own—suggests the two methods are equally safe but that one requires less time and is thus less costly...
A VA study found that one in five respondents who reported quitting smoking was actually still using tobacco-according to urine tests turned in by the respondents. The researchers urge routine use of bio-verification in smoking-cessation studies. Smokers' reports of quitting need bio-verification
Based on a new study, researchers recommend that VA smoking-cessation trials use urine tests or other bio-validation measures to confirm smokers' reports of quitting ...

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