Urgent Updates | August 17

West Nile Infections Rising in the US

West Nile Virus is the leading cause of mosquito-borne disease in the continental US. And as of August 8, 126 human cases had been identified across 22 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Full Access: Medscape


Bird Flu Researchers Turn to Finland’s Mink Farms, Tracking A Virus with Pandemic Potential

H5N1 virus does not infect people easily. But the fear is that uncontrolled spread in animals like mink gives the virus plenty of chances to evolve in ways that could enable it to spill over into people. Already in Finland, a paper from government researchers indicated the virus has spread from mammal to mammal at the farms — and in some cases has picked up mutations indicating an adaptation toward replicating in mammalian cells. Full Access: STAT


FDA Approves First Oral Treatment for Postpartum Depression

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Zurzuvae (zuranolone), the first oral medication indicated to treat postpartum depression (PPD) in adults. PPD is a major depressive episode that typically occurs after childbirth but can also begin during the later stages of pregnancy. The efficacy of Zurzuvae for the treatment of PPD in adults was demonstrated in two randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter studies. Full Access: FDA


Identifying Children Likely to Benefit from Antibiotics for Acute Sinusitis – A Randomized Clinical Trial

Randomized clinical trial including 515 children aged 2 to 11 years diagnosed with acute sinusitis based on clinical criteria. The trial was conducted at primary care offices affiliated with 6 US institutions and was designed to evaluate whether symptom burden differed in subgroups defined by nasopharyngeal Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae, or Moraxella catarrhalis on bacterial culture and by the presence of colored nasal discharge. In children with acute sinusitis, antibiotic treatment had minimal benefit for those without nasopharyngeal bacterial pathogens on presentation, and its effects did not depend on the color of nasal discharge. Testing for specific bacteria on presentation may represent a strategy to reduce antibiotic use in this condition. Full Access: JAMA