Mar 22 2012

Public Health News Roundup: March 22

Having a Sense of Purpose May Prevent Some Heart Attacks

Having a feeling of purpose in life may help to protect against heart attacks among older American adults with coronary heart disease, according to a new study in the Journal of Behavioral Medicine. In the study, researchers surveyed more than 1,500 older adults with coronary heart disease and followed up after two years to investigate the association between purpose, which is typically conceptualized as a person’s sense of directedness and meaning in life, and the occurrence of a heart attack.

The study found a significantly reduced risk of heart attack among participants who reported a higher sense of meaning. The study was supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Pioneer Portfolio to explore Positive Health, an emerging concept that looks at whether in addition to health risks, people also have health assets which can be strengthened to produce a healthier life. Read more on heart health.

New Guidelines: Antibiotics Are Useless For Most Sinus Infections

New guidelines from the Infectious Diseases Society say antibiotics are largely ineffective for sinus infections. According to the Society, about 14 percent of people are diagnosed with a sinus infection each year, and sinus infections remain the fifth leading reason for antibiotic prescriptions. However, between 90 percent and 98 percent of the infections are caused by viruses, for which antibiotics are ineffective. Read more on infectious diseases.

Calls to Some Quit lines Surge in First Two Days of CDC TV Campaign

The Denver Post is reporting that calls to 9 state quitlines operated by National Jewish Health have surged in the first two days of a CDC-funded TV ad campaign showing graphic images former smokers. Call volume was up 200 percent this Monday and Tuesday compared to the same days last week.

National Jewish Health operates state quit lines for nine states: Colorado, Ohio, Montana, Idaho, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Kentucky, Utah and Minnesota. Read more tobacco news.

Tags: Infectious disease, News roundups, Prescription drugs, Public and Community Health, Tobacco