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Research News

NEJM ‘Perspective’ explores use of patient-reported outcomes in improving clinical care

February 2, 2017
Dr. Ethan Basch authored a ‘Perspective’ column published in the Jan. 12 New England Journal of Medicine. The article calls for digitized patient-reported outcomes to be more fully available to physicians as a means of improving patients’ care.

Experts recommend 7-8 hours of sleep for better brain health

January 31, 2017
A new report, issued on Jan. 10 by the Global Council on Brain Health, recommends ways to maintain brain health, including getting at least seven to eight hours of sleep each night. Dr. Peggye Dilworth-Anderson is a Council member.

Study finds genetic variant that confirms shared genetic risk for kidney disease among Hispanics, American Indians

January 31, 2017
A new study, led by Drs. Nora Franceschini and Jianwen Cai, has found an Amerindian-specific genetic variant that influences a kidney trait in Hispanics/Latinos, thereby confirming shared genetic risk for kidney disease among Hispanics/Latinos and American Indians.

Study confirms that more activity, less sitting, reduces mortality risk

January 31, 2017
A new study led by Dr. Kelly Evenson reinforced findings that regular physical activity and less sedentary behavior reduces the risk of mortality.
The study, published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, used an accelerometer to assess participants’ physical activity and sedentary behavior.

JAMA editorial: Geography, income need to be part of effective cancer solutions

January 27, 2017
According to a new study, U.S. cancer mortality rates have decreased — but not uniformly across geographic regions. Successful outcomes often remain dependent upon where patients live and on their economic conditions. Dr. Stephanie Wheeler is co-author of a JAMA editorial that elaborates upon the study.

Study finds diet as effective and less expensive than drugs in treating esophageal inflammation

Dr. Daniel Erim and colleagues found that a six-food elimination diet was as effective as topical corticosteroids — and less expensive — in treating eosinophilic esophagitis, a condition in which inflamed esophageal tissue leads to a person’s difficulty in swallowing solid foods. Erim is a doctoral student in health policy and management.

Obesity prevention education has positive impact on college students, study finds

Dr. Leslie Lytle led a weight-gain prevention intervention program for people in their first and second years of college. The results, reported in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, show that online social networking and support can help prevent weight gain in this group of young adults. Lytle is professor and chair of health behavior at the Gillings School.

Ribisl co-authors Surgeon General’s report on e-cigarette use by youth and young adults

Dr. Kurt Ribisl, professor of health behavior at the Gillings School, is a co-author of the 2016 Surgeon General’s report, “E-cigarette Use Among Youth and Young Adults.” Published by the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, the report calls for improved regulation of e-cigarettes and increased education about health risks related to e-cigarette use.

Faculty member says high school football is not worth health risk to young players

In an article in the journal Pediatrics, Dr. Lewis Margolis argues that high school football programs should be disbanded, given the risks to young players of the sport. Margolis is associate professor of maternal and child health at the Gillings School.

From health-care providers, announcements do more than conversations to improve HPV vaccination rates

In an effort to increase uptake of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination, researchers at UNC evaluated the effectiveness of training health-care providers either to make presumptive announcements about the vaccine or to engage in participatory conversations with families. Study results showed that only the announcement training led to a meaningful increase in vaccine initiation.