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Agency for Healthcare Research Quality

Research Activities

July 2004, No. 287


About Research Activities

Feature Story

Younger women with heart failure have worse quality of life than older women and men, but they also tend to improve more over time

Clinical Decisionmaking

Treatment of high cholesterol in women should be based on all risk factors of heart disease, not just lipid levels
Researchers focus on primary care for diabetes and use of a rapid-turnaround test to measure blood glucose

Pharmaceutical Research

Sibutramine can help manage obesity, but it may not be appropriate for patients with significant cardiovascular disease
Careful use of chloramphenicol and quinolone antibiotics may help preserve the use of chloramphenicol to treat vancomycin-resistant infections
Researchers find no evidence that vitamin E supplements have any benefit in preventing or treating cardiovascular disease
Patients may overstate their use of antihypertensive medication
Most pediatric ER workers say they are willing to receive the smallpox vaccine, but few have done so

Children's Health

Selective use of CT scan and ultrasound to help diagnose appendicitis should markedly reduce unnecessary surgeries
Children with short stature function within the normal range on most standardized tests
Disadvantaged communities may be at increased risk for S. pneumoniae transmission among young children
Child abuse is associated with increased risk of death in young children with abdominal injuries

Outcomes/Effectiveness Research

Women who undergo hysterectomy for abnormal uterine bleeding report improved health-related quality of life
Individuals who suffer from both major depression and diabetes function worse than those with either illness alone
Most people who have chronic fatigue syndrome are underemployed or unemployed, and some can be considered disabled

Patient Safety/Quality

Medical errors appear to be common among ICU patients, and a simple blame-free reporting system can help identify them
A pain in the neck could mean Lemierre's syndrome

Mental Health Research

Improved access to medication and therapy for depressed primary care patients improves 5-year outcomes
Many barriers interfere with family care in psychiatric settings


Task Force update concludes that current data do not support screening asymptomatic individuals for lung cancer
Screening people with hypertension for diabetes is more cost effective than screening all patients for diabetes

Dental Research

WIC participation improves poor children's access to dental care
Higher income and coverage for dental care increase use of dental services among older adults

HIV/AIDS Research

For women with HIV and abnormal Pap smears, colposcopy should continue to be the next step to rule out cervical cancer
Study finds delays in prescribing protease inhibitors for some HIV-infected individuals
Alleviating HIV symptoms is critical for patients' mental health

Health Care Costs and Financing

Children's health insurance coverage has increased, more care has shifted to outpatient sites, and expenditures have declined
People who switch health plans often do not have to change physicians
Studies reveal patient cost-sharing influences patients' use of cancer screening and emergency department care
Inner-city parents often have limited knowledge about managed care rules and practices
Disparities in use of preventive care may be reduced by requiring Medicare HMO enrollees to select a primary care doctor
Medicare managed care is better at delivering preventive services, but traditional Medicare is better in other areas
More restrictive laws and consumer and investor anxiety have had an effect on managed care cost-cutting strategies


New publications and data products now available from AHRQ
Register now for the September 2004 MEPS data users' workshop
Journal features four articles stemming from a collaboration between AHRQ and the FTC
New evidence reports and technical review now available from AHRQ

Research Briefs

Current as of July 2004
AHRQ Publication No. 04-0080

Internet Citation:

Research Activities newsletter. July 2004, No. 287. AHRQ Publication No. 04-0080. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.


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