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Our Editorial Team Weighs In

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Did you miss a report from a prior Neurology Today? Now you can learn more about the original reports with additional comments from our editorial team. Check out the Neurology Today videos from this past year on the Neurology Today dedicated YouTube channel: http://bit.ly/YouTube-NT.

  • Alzheimer's: Can Olfactory Deficits Predict Dementia?Two new studies — one from a team at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and the other at Columbia University — suggest that odor identification tests could help in making an accurate Alzheimer's disease diagnosis and may even precede the onset of memory problems. Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, speaks with Associate Editor Robert Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN, about the findings. Read the Neurology Today story here: http://bit.ly/NT-olfactory.
  • Epilepsy: Gene Mutations Associated with Adverse Reactions to Phenytoin: Investigators identified CYP2C variants as genetic factors associated with -phenytoin-related severe cutaneous adverse reactions in epilepsy patients. Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, speaks with Associate Editor Robert Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN, about the findings. Read the Neurology Today story here: http://bit.ly/phenytoin-NT.
  • Feeding Tubes for Stroke: Why Use Varies Among Hospitals Nationwide In an analysis of data from an observational study, investigators reported feeding tubes were used more frequently in stroke patients at for-profit hospitals, urban hospitals, teaching hospitals, and hospitals with the highest stroke volume, intubation use, and proportion of black and Hispanic admissions. Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, speaks to Associate Editor Robert Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN, about the findings. Read the Neurology Today story here: http://bit.ly/stroke-tube.
  • Sickle Cell Anemia: Will Blood Transfusions Prevent Recurrent Strokes in Children? A new study found that blood transfusions cut by more than half the likelihood of recurrent infarcts in children with sickle cell disease who had evidence of a prior infarct on brain imaging. Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, speaks to Associate Editor Robert Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN, about the findings. Read the Neurology Today article here: http://bit.ly/sickle-NT.
  • Youth Concussion: Collegiate Athletic Associations Fund Research in Prevention and Treatment Two major grant programs focusing on research on preventing concussion at the collegiate level are highlighted. Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, speaks to Associate Editor Robert Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN, about the programs. Read the Neurology Today article: http://bit.ly/headinjury-NT
  • A new approach to Huntington's disease? At the 2014 AAN Annual Meeting, investigators reported the results of a double-blind, placebo-controlled, international multi-center study of selisistat in individuals with Huntington's disease (HD). They found that, apart from increases in liver function tests in a subset of patients, selisistat was safe and well tolerated. In this video, Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, and Neurology Today Associate Editor Robert G. Holloway Jr., MD, MPH, discuss the meaning of these results with David Holtzman, MD, professor and chair of neurology at Washington University in St. Louis. Read the Neurology Today article here: http://bit.ly/HD-NT.
  • Can telemedicine for stroke improve treatment outcomes? In new research presented at the 2014 AAN Annual Meeting, investigators reported that implementation of telemedicine increased tPA use in stroke patients by more than 50 percent. Smaller hospitals showed the most significant increase in tPA treatment rate. Hear about the implications of this research in a panel discussion with Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD; Neurology Today Associate Editor Robert G. Holloway Jr., MD, MPH; Vladimir Hachinski, MD, professor of neurology and epidemiology at Western University in Ontario; and Jeffrey L. Saver, MD, director of stroke and vascular neurology at the University of California in Los Angeles. Read the full abstract here: http://bit.ly/telemedStroke.
  • Can vitamin D suppress multiple sclerosis? The synthetic vitamin D analogue alfacalcidol significantly improved fatigue among multiple sclerosis (MS) patients, researchers from Israel reported at the 2014 American Academy of Neurology Annual Meeting. In this video discussion, Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD; Neurology Today Associate Editor Robert G. Holloway Jr., MD, MPH; and John R. Corboy, MD, professor of neurology at the University of Colorado-Denver and co-director of the Rocky Mountain Multiple Sclerosis Center at Anschutz Medical Campus, discuss the implications of these findings as well as their limitations. Read the Neurology Today story here: http://bit.ly/vitaminD-NT.
  • Exon-skipping therapies for Duchenne muscular dystrophyIn separate trials, investigators reported promising new data on two exon-skipping therapies for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), eteplirsen and drisapersen. In this video, Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, and Neurology Today Associate Editor Robert G. Holloway Jr., MD, MPH, comment on these results and what they may mean for the DMD community. Read the Neurology Today article: http://bit.ly/DMD-NT.
  • Is polypharmacy more effective for stopping status epilepticus than sequential therapy?Neurology Editor-in-chief Robert A. Gross, MD, PhD, FAAN, an epilepsy expert, discusses that question — and the limitations of the animal model and experiment — in a video dialogue with Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, and Associate Editor Robert G. Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN. Read the Neurology Today article here: http://bit.ly/polypharmacy-NT.
  • Is a blood test feasible for the detection of Alzheimer's disease?In a panel discussion, David S. Knopman, MD, FAAN, a professor of neurology at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN; Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN; and Associate Editor Robert Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN, offer an analysis of why a blood test for Alzheimer's -disease is needed and the challenges that remain ahead for ensuring that it is accurate. Read the Neurology Today article here: http://bit.ly/bloodtest-AD.
  • Can neuroimaging aid in the diagnosis of movement disorders and dementia? In a pooled analysis presented at the 2014 AAN Annual Meeting, DaTscan imaging yielded a 91-percent sensitivity rate and a 92-percent specificity rate in diagnosing parkinsonian syndrome; and a 78-percent sensitivity and 90-percent specificity for differentiating dementia with Lewy bodies from Alzheimer's disease. In this video, Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, and Neurology Today Associate Editor Robert G. Holloway Jr., MD, MPH, spoke with Joseph C. Masdeu, MD, PhD, director of the Nantz National Alzheimer Center, about the potential clinical implications of these findings. Read the Neurology Today article here: http://bit.ly/DaTscan-NT.
  • Should hyperosmolar therapy be used in intracerebral hemorrhage patients? A new study presented at the 2014 AAN Annual Meeting calls into question the use of hyperosmolar therapy for treating intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH). In a review of outcomes from a registry of patients with ICH, investigators said those treated with hyperosmolar therapy experienced significantly worse outcomes than those who did not receive the treatment. Will these findings alter ICH care? What additional research is necessary to confirm these findings? In this video, Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD; Neurology Today Associate Editor Robert G. Holloway Jr., MD, MPH; Vladimir Hachinski, MD, professor of neurology and epidemiology at Western University in Ontario; and Jeffrey L. Saver, MD, director of stroke and vascular neurology at the University of California in Los Angeles, discuss the findings. Read the Neurology Today article here: http://bit.ly/hyperosmolar-NT.
  • Is medical marijuana effective for neurological disorders? Medical marijuana appears to help alleviate spasticity and central or spasm-related pain and some other multiple sclerosis symptoms, but there is little evidence of efficacy in treating epilepsy or movement disorders, according to two systematic reviews published by the AAN earlier this year. In this video, Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD; Neurology Today Associate Editor Robert G. Holloway Jr., MD, MPH; and Neurology Editor-in-Chief Robert A. Gross, MD, PhD, discuss the available evidence for medical marijuana use in neurological disorders, as well as the lingering gaps in knowledge. Read the Neurology Today article about the AAN evidence review here: http://bit.ly/cannabis-NT.
  • How can neuroimaging help diagnose ALS? Individuals with mutations in the superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) gene develop brain white matter abnormalities before the onset of symptoms of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), according to a new imaging study that was presented at the 2014 AAN Annual Meeting. In a panel discussion, Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD and Neurology Today Associate Editor Robert G. Holloway Jr., MD, MPH, spoke with Joseph C. Masdeu, MD, PhD, director of the Nantz National Alzheimer Center and Neuroimaging, about what these findings may signify for ALS experts and patients, and how neuroimaging could potentially improve ALS care and diagnosis in the future.
  • How should neurologists address incidental medical findings? How should clinicians address “incidental” medical findings that might surface when they are investigating a seemingly unrelated clinical issue? The Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues has weighed in, offering recommendations in a new report, “Anticipate and Communicate,” released in December 2013 that suggests, among other recommendations, clinicians inform patients before a test or procedure is ordered about the range of possibilities that might be revealed and that they “respect a patient's preference not to know about incidental or secondary findings.”? In this video, Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, and Associate Editor Robert G. Holloway Jr., MD, MPH, discuss this new report, as well as their own experience with disclosing incidental medical findings to patients. Read the Neurology Today article here: http://bit.ly/bioethics-NT.
  • How can new data on narcolepsy as an autoimmune disorder affect treatment? Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine reported compelling evidence that human narcolepsy is an autoimmune disease that results when people with certain gene variants are exposed to a virus or a vaccine that induces the body to launch an attack on hypocretin-producing cells. The paper, authored by Emmanuel Mignot, MD, PhD, director of the Stanford Center for Sleep Sciences and Medicine, and colleagues, was published in the Dec. 18 issue of Science Translational Medicine. In this video, Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD; Neurology Today Associate Editor Robert G. Holloway Jr., MD, MPH; and Michael E. Yurcheshen, MD, associate professor of neurology and medicine at the University of Rochester Medical Center, discuss how these findings may affect future treatment of narcolepsy. Read the full story here: http://bit.ly/narcolepsy-NT.
  • Spinal Muscular Atrophy: Why a New Antisense Therapy is Moving to Phase 3 Trials Two phase 2 trials of intrathecal delivery of Isis-SMNRx, an antisense molecule, showed promising results in infants and children with spinal muscular atrophy. Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, and Associate Editor Robert Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN, discuss the findings with Kathryn J. Swoboda, MD, director of the Pediatric Motor Disorders Research Program at the University of Utah. Read the full Neurology Today story: http://bit.ly/1vRjw18
  • Opioids: What Role Should Neurologists Play in Managing Opioids Use for Chronic Pain? The American Academy of Neurology recently released a position paper on opioid use for chronic noncancer pain, finding that “there is no substantial evidence of pain relief or improved function over long periods of time without incurring serious risk of -overdose, dependence, or addiction.” Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, and Associate Editor Robert Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN, discuss the paper. Read the full Neurology Today story: http://bit.ly/1wDztsZ
  • Antibody Assays for Brain Antigens: A New Study Questions Their Utility in Detecting Neurologic Conditions A recent study reports that the seroprevalence of 25 autoantibodies against brain antigens were found to be comparable for both healthy people and those with brain diseases. Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, and Associate Editor Robert Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN, discuss the findings. Read the Neurology Today story: http://bit.ly/antibodystory-NT
  • Multiple Sclerosis: What Is the Evidence for the Benefits of a Low-Sodium Diet? Multiple studies have reported that a high intake of sodium is associated with an increase in multiple sclerosis -exacerbations. Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, and Associate Editor Robert Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN, -discuss the findings. Read the Neurology Today story: http://bit.ly/1wzPxhg
  • IOM Report on End-of-Life Care: What More Should Neurologists Be Doing in Palliative Care? A recent report by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) found that the quality of care patients wish to receive at the end of life rarely accords with the care they do receive. Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, and Associate Editor Robert Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN, discuss how neurologists can incorporate the IOM's suggestions into practice. Read the Neurology Today story: http://bit.ly/NT-endoflife
  • Brain Death: A Novel Method for Training Neurology Residents to Detect and Discuss It Simulation exercises are increasingly being used to teach neurology residents to recognize and talk about brain death. Neurology Today Editor-in-chief Steven P. Ringel, MD, FAAN, and Associate Editor Robert Holloway Jr., MD, FAAN, discuss the importance of these exercises for training residents. Read more on this topic in Neurology Today: http://bit.ly/1rVhjUf