Top news of the day from across the health care landscape.
For the first time in more than a decade, the CDC said that the entire continental United States is experiencing a flu epidemic, according to STAT. Current estimates show that the number of individuals hospitalized with the flu was 22.7 per 1000, according to the article. Although the CDC said the flu season may be peaking, many more are likely to become infected before the flu season is over, according to the article.
A high-sodium diet may have detrimental effects on the brain and mental performance, even if it does not cause a significant increase in blood pressure, according to the Los Angeles Times. A recent mouse study showed that blood flow to the brain and cognitive performance decreased with a high-sodium diet. These effects were observed to be related to signals sent from the gut to the brain by the immune system, rather than consequences of high blood pressure, according to the article.
The promise of genetic sequencing for patients with cancer may not be a reality for many, according to NPR. Physicians have found that there is confusion surrounding genetic analysis, mostly because various companies offering the tests can interpret the results differently. A recent randomized study of precision cancer treatment also did not indicate a survival benefit for these patients, which highlights the need for advancement in the field, according to the article.