New Cholesterol-Lowering Drugs Near FDA Approval

Two new drugs to help physicians better manage “bad” cholesterol (LDL cholesterol) have received approval this week from an FDA advisory panel. The FDA typically accepts those recommendations, so the drugs may soon be available for patient use. The new drugs – both injectables – are called alirocumab (brand name, Praluent), which received the panel’s … Read More

Have You Experienced the Placebo Effect?

Have you ever felt better after simply placing a bandage on a wound? Have you felt more energized the moment after taking a bright red pill? If so, you’ve experienced a form of the placebo effect. A placebo is an inactive treatment that mimics an active therapy. The placebo effect happens when patients believe a … Read More

New Drug May Transform Treatment of Heart Failure

A new drug is showing significant promise in improving the treatment of heart failure, after a clinical trial showed it lowered the chances of death or hospitalization by about 20 percent compared to the current standard drug treatment. Researchers recently released clinical trial results for the drug, called LCZ696.  The data from the clinical trial … Read More

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Experimental Device Fails to Drop Blood Pressure

An experimental device that had shown promise and raised hopes for controlling stubbornly and dangerously high blood pressure is not effective, a new study involving Cleveland Clinic cardiologists and patients shows.   The device, known as the Symplicity System and made by Minneapolis-based Medtronic, Inc., is a generator that delivers jolts of radiofrequency energy through … Read More

‘Surprising Link’: Smoking and Bladder Cancer

Many people don’t realize that smoking tobacco is the single most important known risk factor for bladder cancer, according to the National Institutes for Health. The effects of cigarette smoke toxins entering your body have received a lot of attention, but far too little attention has been given to how those toxins make their way … Read More

Study Reveals Aliskiren’s Unexpected Benefits

Sometimes medical researchers make good discoveries about one area of medicine when they are studying another. This is what happened when research on how well aliskiren slowed or reversed coronary artery disease turned up unexpected results. They are published in the September issue of The Journal of the American Medical Association. Though aliskiren didn’t significantly … Read More

New Million-Dollar Trial for Multiple Sclerosis Drug

Cleveland Clinic has been selected as the primary investigator in a $11.3 million nationwide study funded primarily by the National Institutes of Health to conduct a trial of the oral drug ibudilast for progressive multiple sclerosis (MS) patients. The Phase 2 study will enroll patients at 28 clinical sites across the U.S. The trial is … Read More

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New App Takes Mystery Out of Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are crucial to advancing cancer research, but less than 5 percent of adult cancer patients actually sign up for them, according to the National Cancer Institute. Why do patients hesitate? I think many of my patients don’t know enough about clinical trials to consider them an option. To them, “clinical trials” sound mysterious … Read More

A Blood Test to Diagnose Alzheimer’s Disease?

A blood test to diagnose Alzheimer’s disease may be moving closer to reality following a recent clinical trial at Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health. Kate Zhong, MD, Senior Director of Clinical Research and Development, and her team are working with a French company (ExonHit) to develop a new diagnostic blood test for … Read More