Top news stories from AMA Morning Rounds®: Week of Oct. 24, 2022


Read AMA Morning Rounds®’ most popular stories in medicine and public health from the week of Oct. 24, 2022–Oct. 28, 2022.

USA Today (10/27, Williams) reports, “Overall U.S. cancer death rates continue to drop among men, women, children, teens and young adults, according to” the “Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer.” The report “showed a decline in every major ethnic and racial group from 2015 to 2019.” According to the report published in the journal Cancer, “cancer deaths decreased by 2.1% for women and men during that period,” and it “showed a 2.3% decline per year in death rates among men and a 1.9% annual decline for women.”

ABC News (10/27, Liu) reports that “rates of new cancer diagnoses have remained approximately the same from 2014 to 2018, the report said.” And “some cancers continue to threaten patients at high rates,” including “female breast, kidney, pancreas, myeloma and others that are closely tied to medical conditions like obesity, diabetes, and general inactivity.” However, “notable strides have...been made in other cancers including kidney, ovary, and liver cancers, the study said.”

Medscape (10/27, McKnight, Subscription Publication) reports, “The decline in mortality rates was most significant in lung cancer (at 4%) and melanoma (5%) for both men and women,” but “mortality rates increased for cancers of the pancreas, brain, bones and joints among men, and cancers of the pancreas and uterus among women.”

The Washington Post (10/26, Sun, Nirappil) reports, “Monkeypox is causing devastating outcomes for people with severely weakened immune systems, even as new cases continue to decline in the United States, according to a federal report.” Although “the vast majority recover within weeks, some patients with untreated HIV experienced especially dire consequences such as losing function of their brain or spinal cord, eyes, and lungs despite being given antiviral medication.” The findings in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report are “based on the agency’s consultations with clinicians treating 57 U.S. patients hospitalized with monkeypox complications from the outbreak’s peak in mid-August through Oct. 10.”

The New York Times (10/26, Mandavilli) reports that of the “57 hospitalized patients described in the report, 82% had HIV More than two-thirds of the patients were Black and nearly one-quarter were homeless, reflecting racial and economic inequities seen in the outbreak overall.”

The New York Times (10/25, Blum) reports, “Rates of uterine cancer have been increasing in the United States, particularly for Black and Hispanic women.” This year, “the number of cases diagnosed each year rose to 65,950...compared to 39,000 15 years ago,” and “the National Cancer Institute estimates that around 3.1% of women in the U.S. will be diagnosed with uterine cancer at some point in their lives.” Since “there are no regular screenings for uterine cancer, and pap smears cannot detect it,” experts urge cautious monitoring of menstrual cycle symptoms.

CNN (10/24, Kounang) reports a study published in JAMA Network Open “finds that gaming may help with both cognition and impulse control” in children. The study “found that kids who played video games for three or more hours a day did better on tasks associated with memory and impulse control than children who didn’t play video games at all.” Also, the gamers “had higher levels of activity in parts of the brain associated with attention and working memory.”

The Hill (10/24, Melillo) reports, “Findings are based on a study of nearly 2,000 children, marking the largest investigation ever conducted to [assess] the association between video games, cognition, and brain function.”

HealthDay (10/24, Norton) reports “the study also found no evidence that those kids were worse off in terms of mental health, rule breaking or attention problems.”

The New York Times (10/23, Mandavilli) reports, “With few to no restrictions in place and travel and socializing back in full swing, an expected winter rise in COVID cases appears poised to collide with a resurgent influenza season, causing a ‘twindemic’—or even a ‘tripledemic,’ with a third pathogen, respiratory syncytial the mix.” The article adds “cases of flu have begun to tick up earlier than usual,” while children with RSV, “rhinoviruses and enteroviruses are already straining pediatric hospitals in several states.” Most cases of the respiratory illnesses “are likely to be mild, but together they may sicken millions of Americans and swamp hospitals, public health experts warned.”

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