BMJ 1997; 315 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.315.7119.1388 (Published 22 November 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;315:1388

Minerva is a believer in centres of excellence publishing their results to encourage others. Surgeons at Johns Hopkins have recently reviewed 650 patients who had pancreaticoduodenal resections, of whom 443 had periampullary carcinomas and 71 had chronic pancreatitis, while the remainder had neuroendocrine tumours or adenomas (Annals of Surgery 1997;226:248-60). Only nine patients (1.4%) died in hospital or within 30 days of surgery. The median survival of the whole cohort was 47 months.

Only one case of “wild” poliomyelitis has been confirmed so far this year in the European region of the World Health Organisation. In 1996 there were 193 cases. In the eastern Mediterranean region cases have fallen from 532 to 424. The WHO believes that it is now in the last chapter of the history of poliomyelitis, which should be eradicated from both these regions by 2000.

The US Task Force on Genetic Testing is concerned that the number of genetic tests being developed could overwhelm institutional review boards (Science 1997;278:602-5). It is calling for some system to be developed to prioritise tests waiting for review, looking at their ability to predict future disease in healthy or apparently healthy people, their likely use for predictive purposes, and the absence of independent confirmatory tests.

A study in Sweden of children born to women …

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