Intended for healthcare professionals


In brief

BMJ 2011; 342 doi: (Published 09 February 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d890

Cancer deaths fall in Europe: Nearly 1.3 million people in Europe will die from cancer in 2011, a study in Annals of Oncology predicts (doi:10.1093/annonc/mdq774). Its estimates show a fall from the 2007 figures in the overall number of deaths from cancer in men (down by 7%) and women (down 6%), but it highlights areas of concern, particularly a rising incidence of lung cancer in women.

GP is removed from drug advisory committee: Hans-Christian Raabe, a Christian GP, has been removed from the UK government’s Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs less than a month after he was appointed (BMJ 2011;342:d624, 31 Jan, doi:10.1136/bmj.d624). Home Office officials said that he had failed to disclose when interviewed for the post that he had coauthored a paper linking paedophilia with homosexuality. The officials said that this put his scientific credibility into question.

Keeping pollution controls put in for China’s Olympics could save lives: Maintaining air pollution control measures that were put in place in Beijing during the 2008 Olympic Games could halve the lifetime risk of lung cancer among residents from combustion pollutants, a study in Environmental Health Perspectives has found (doi:10.1289/ehp.1003100). This might translate to about 10 000 fewer lifetime cases of lung cancer in the area, down from 21 200, say the scientists.

Alcohol interventions could help Scotland’s prisoners: Routine screening of offenders for alcohol problems could help reduce the rate of reoffending and tackle wider social problems linked to excessive drinking, such as violence, drug use, social exclusion, and unemployment, says a report from the Alcohol and Offender Criminal Justice Research Programme. It is estimated that as many as three quarters of male prisoners in Scotland may have alcohol problems.

Using generic losartan could save NHS millions: The NHS in England could save £200m (€240m; $320m) a year if it switched patients with hypertension and heart failure to generic losartan instead of branded candesartan (Amias) without any loss in clinical benefits, say researchers (International Journal of Clinical Practice doi:10.1111/j.1742-1241.2011.02633.x). They reviewed 14 trials of more than 16 000 patients. Candesartan reduced blood pressure slightly more than losartan, which recently came off patent, but it was unlikely to be cost effective, they said.


Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d890

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