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March/April 2011 Annals of Family Medicine tip sheet
Date:3/14/2011

h drops and self-irrigation using a bulb syringe, researchers evaluated the impact on health service utilization of the latter in the United Kingdom. Of the 237 patients studied, researchers found that of patients presenting with ears blocked with wax and subsequently cleared, those originally given a bulb syringe for self-use had about one-half the rate of irrigation consultations of those treated in the clinic for irrigation in the following two years. Specifically, in the 2-year follow-up period, 73 percent of control group patients returned to the clinic with episodes of earwax versus 60 percent of patients in the intervention group. The average number of consultations for earwax was 1.15 among control group participants versus 0.64 for intervention group patients, a difference of 0.50 consultations and an estimated 79 percent higher consultation rate for the control group. The authors conclude that self-treatment with drops and self-irrigation may offer a feasible alternative to routine attendance with a clinician, saving patients the time and cost involved in clinic visits. They estimate that encouraging the initial use of bulb syringes could, in the following two years, potentially reduce the number of clinic irrigations by around 0.9 million in the United Kingdom.

Randomized Trial of Bulb Syringes for Earwax: Impact on Health Service Utilization
By Richard Coppin, B.Med.Sci., B.M., B.S., D.R.C.O.G., et al
The Surgery, Overton, United Kingdom


Women With Intellectual Disabilities Feel Inadequately Prepared for and Upset by Mammography

Women with intellectual disabilities perceive mammography differently from women in the general population, and their perception is shaped by inadequate knowledge, anxiety and inadequate preparation. In-depth interviews with 27 intellectually disabled women revealed that women with intellectual disabilities feel poorly prepared for the procedure, not understanding its purpose or what
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Contact: Angela Sharma
asharma@aafp.org
913-269-2269
American Academy of Family Physicians
Source:Eurekalert

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