ASCLS eNewsBytes
Jan. 7, 2014

Workers' hands harbor C. difficile after routine CDI patient care
Nearly 25 percent of healthcare workers' hands are contaminated with Clostridium difficile spores after caring for patients with the infection, researchers reported in Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology. "This is the first known study focusing on the carriage of viable C. difficile spores on healthcare workers hands," Caroline Landelle, Ph.D, of the Infection Control Unit, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Albert Chenevier–Henri Mondor, Assistance Publique–Hôpitaux de Paris, Université Paris–Est Créteil, France, said in a press release.More

ASCLS-APHL webinar series offers hot topics for 2014!
American Society for Clinical Laboratory Science
CLIA Competency Assessment, Quality Indicators for Pre- and Post-analytical Lab Processes, and Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing Case Studies: Effective Resistance Detection and Reporting — three hot topics for 2014! P.A.C.E.®-approved. Go to the ASCLS website for more information.More

CDC confirms superbug transmission via endoscopy
Medscape Medical News
Manual cleaning and high-level disinfection in an automated endoscope reprocessor may not reliably prevent transmission of multidrug-resistant bacteria by endoscopes used in endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography , according to a field investigation report published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. The researchers used a case-control study of patients who had been cared for at a single hospital to identify a history of ERCP as a common factor in 6 of 8 cases. More

CDC names top 5 health threats in 2014
MedCity News
The disease detectives at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention named the top five global health threats they expect to tackle in 2014. Topping the list is the threat of the emergence and spread of new microbes, but several other threats are also on the CDC's radar. Antibiotic-resistant infections or inadvertent release of pathogens made the list as well, proving that education on infection control and anti-microbial stewardship is absolutely critical.More

Genomic study IDs cervical cancer clues
Harvard Medical School via Bioscience Technology
Researchers from the Boston area, Mexico and Norway have completed a comprehensive genomic analysis of cervical cancer in two patient populations. The study identified recurrent genetic mutations not previously found in cervical cancer, including at least one for which targeted treatments have been approved for other forms of cancer. More

Daycare surfaces may hold germs longer than thought
HealthDay News
Germs that cause common illnesses, including ear infections and strep throat, can linger on surfaces such as cribs, children's toys and books for hours after contamination — even after the objects are well cleaned — according to a small new study. Researchers suggested that additional steps may need to be taken to protect children and adults from Streptococcus pneumoniae and Streptococcus pyogenes, particularly in schools, daycare centers and hospitals.More

Genetically identical bacteria can behave in radically different ways
Infection Control Today
Although a population of bacteria may be genetically identical, individual bacteria within that population can act in radically different ways. This phenomenon is crucial in the bacteria's struggle for survival. The more diversity a population of bacteria has, the more likely it will contain individuals able to take advantage of a new opportunity or overcome a new threat, including the threat posed by an antibiotic.More

ID docs back preexposure HIV prophylaxis, yet few provide it
Medscape Medical News
Nearly 75 percent of infectious disease specialists across the United States and Canada support the use of preexposure prophylaxis against HIV, but fewer than 1 in 10 have actually provided that service, according to results from a newly published survey. Findings of the survey appear in an article published online in Clinical Infectious Diseases.More

Gloves and gowns decrease MRSA, but not VRE transmission
Anesthesiology News
Gloves and gowns may help prevent the spread of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, but they do not stop vancomycin-resistant enterococci transmission, researchers at the University of Maryland recently found. The combined rate of MRSA and VRE infections in ICUs also remained unaffected by these contact precautions, according to the study, which was published online in the Journal of the American Medical Association. More

New combination therapy promising for triple-negative breast cancer
Oncology Nurse Advisor
The investigation of serial studies to predict your therapeutic response with imaging and molecular analysis 2, an innovative, multidrug, phase 2 breast cancer trial, has yielded positive results with the first drug to complete testing during the trial. Adding the chemotherapy, carboplatin, and the molecularly targeted drug, veliparib, to standard presurgery chemotherapy improved outcomes for women with triple-negative breast cancer, according to results from the I-SPY 2 trial, which were presented at the 2013 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.More

Lung cancer screening using CT scans urged for heavy smokers
The Boston Globe
Many heavy smokers and ex-smokers who recently quit should be screened annually for lung cancer with a computed tomography scan that uses a low dose of radiation, a national panel of prevention experts said. Some of these people now get routine chest X-rays, but the panel concluded that CT scans are better able to detect the tiniest lung cancers at an early, more curable stage.More

Workers' hands harbor C. difficile after routine CDI patient care
Nearly 25 percent of healthcare workers' hands are contaminated with Clostridium difficile spores after caring for patients with the infection, researchers reported in Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology. More

More evidence that blood transfusions raise thrombosis risk in ACS patients
Medscape Medical News
Many patients hospitalized with acute coronary syndromes receive blood or blood products due to bleeding complications or in response to anemia, yet there is also evidence that transfusions may be an independent risk factor for ischemic events, according to a study.More

ACC/AHA publish new guideline for management of blood cholesterol
American Heart Association
The American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association released a new clinical practice guideline for the treatment of blood cholesterol in people at high risk for cardiovascular diseases caused by atherosclerosis that can lead to heart attack, stroke or death. More

Study: Greater health spending helps men more than women
HealthDay News
Increased health spending in developed countries tends to benefit men more than women, a new study finds. Researchers analyzed data from 27 developed nations to determine the efficiency of health care spending, and found that men had greater gains in life expectancy than women in nearly every country.More

Police: Indy man stole brains from museum, sold them for cash
The Indianapolis Star
Authorities say David Charles, a 21-year-old Indianapolis resident, is accused of breaking into the Indiana Medical History Museum multiple times this year and stealing jars of human brain tissue and other preserved material. A tipster who paid hundreds of dollars on the online auction site helped bring the organ entrepreneurism to an end.More