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Top news stories from AMA Morning Rounds®: Week of Jan. 2, 2023


Read AMA Morning Rounds®’ most popular stories in medicine and public health from the week of Jan. 2, 2023–Jan. 6, 2023.

NBC News (1/2, Bendix) reports, “Adults who aren’t sufficiently hydrated may age faster, face a higher risk of chronic diseases and be more likely to die younger than those who stay well-hydrated, according to” findings published online in the journal eBioMedicine. The study was based on data from over 11,000 U.S. adults over a 25-year period.

CNN (1/2, Rogers) reports that according to the study, “adults with levels above 142 mEq/L had a 10% to 15% higher chance of being biologically older than their chronological age compared with participants in the 137 to 142 mEq/L range.” Meanwhile, “people with levels above 144 mEq/L had a 50% higher risk of being biologically older and a 21% higher risk of dying early.”

According to the New York Times (1/3, Barry), “children who habitually checked their social media feeds at around age 12 showed a distinct trajectory, with their sensitivity to social rewards from peers heightening over time,” while “teenagers with less engagement in social media followed the opposite path, with a declining interest in social rewards.” Researchers arrived at these conclusions after conducting “successive” functional magnetic resonance imaging “brain scans of middle schoolers between the ages of 12 and 15, a period of especially rapid brain development.” The findings were published online in JAMA Pediatrics.

USA Today (1/4, Weintraub) reports, “The latest COVID-19 variant to sweep across the country, XBB.1.5, doesn’t appear to cause more serious disease than its predecessors, experts say.” According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “as of Dec. 31, XBB.1.5 accounted for more than 40% of cases in the United States, up from about 1% less than a month earlier.”

The Hill (1/4, Choi) reports, “White House health officials are cautioning against a rush to panic over the XBB.1.5 Omicron subvariant...with officials stating it is not yet known if this version is more dangerous.”

OncLive (1/4, Seymour) reports, “The FDA has granted a breakthrough device designation to the OverC Multi-Cancer Detection Blood Test (MCDBT) for the early detection of cancers including esophageal, liver, lung, ovarian, and pancreatic in adults aged to 50 to 75 years with average risk.” In data “from the THUNDER case-control study, OverC™ MCDBT demonstrated a 69.1% rate of sensitivity and 98.9% rate of specificity.”

MedPage Today (1/5, Hein) reports, “Cases of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) may be more common and severe than previously reported, research on hospitalizations from 31 U.S. states suggested.” Reviewing billing code data for MIS-C “turned up 4,107 hospitalizations for MIS-C in 2021, representing roughly 17 cases for every 100 COVID-19 hospitalizations among kids, according to” investigators. In addition, “deaths occurred in 0.8% of the cases, increasing to 5.8% when six or more organs were involved...the group reported in JAMA Network Open.”

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