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In This Issue of JAMA
February 10, 2015


Author Affiliations

Copyright 2015 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved. Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.

JAMA. 2015;313(6):543-545. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.11567

Approximately 25% to 35% of blood donors become iron depleted from regular donation. Kiss and colleagues assessed postdonation hemoglobin recovery time and iron stores in 215 adult blood donors who were randomly assigned to receive ferrous gluconate (37.5 mg of elemental iron) daily or no iron for 24 weeks after donating 1 unit of whole blood. The authors found that low-dose iron supplementation, compared with no supplementation, reduced the time to recovery of the postdonation decrease in hemoglobin in donors with ferritin levels up to 50 ng/mL.

Author Video Interview

In a multicenter randomized placebo-controlled trial involving 1741 patients with early Parkinson disease treated with dopaminergic therapy, Kieburtz and colleagues investigated whether creatine monohydrate would slow the rate of Parkinson disease–related clinical decline. After a planned interim analysis (955 patients with 4 years’ median follow-up) the trial was stopped for futility. The authors report that compared with placebo, creatine monohydrate for at least 5 years did not improve clinical outcomes among patients with early, treated Parkinson disease.

Telomeres—noncoding nucleotides and an associated protein complex that protect the ends of chromosomes—are markers of cellular replicative capacity, cellular senescence, and aging. In an analysis of longitudinal data from 330 patients who underwent unrelated allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) for severe aplastic anemia, Gadalla and colleagues found that longer donor leukocyte telomere length was associated with increased 5-year patient survival after HCT. In an Editorial, Saad and colleagues discuss unresolved questions regarding the relationship between leukocyte telomere length and survival after HCT.


Emdin and colleagues examined the association between blood pressure–lowering treatment and vascular disease in patients with type 2 diabetes in an analysis of data from 40 randomized trials (100 354 patients). Among the authors’ findings were that blood pressure–lowering treatment was associated with significantly lower risk of all-cause mortality, cardiovascular events, coronary heart disease, stroke, albuminuria, and retinopathy. In an Editorial, Williams discusses the link between blood pressure and diabetes.


Continuing Medical Education

Clinical Review & Education

An article in JAMA Dermatology reported that among individuals with an extremely high risk of melanoma, a screening strategy involving full skin examination, total body photography, and sequential digital dermoscopy imaging facilitated early diagnosis of primary melanoma. In this From The JAMA Network article, Sondak and colleagues discuss the effectiveness of a risk-stratified approach to melanoma screening.

This JAMA Clinical Evidence Synopsis by Karsch-Völk and colleagues summarizes a Cochrane review of clinical trials assessing Echinacea products vs placebo for prevention (10 trials) or treatment (15 trials) of the common cold. Exploratory meta-analysis of data from the prevention trials suggested that Echinacea products may be associated with a small reduction in cold incidence. The evidence for clinically relevant treatment effects—including duration of symptoms—was weak.

Metformin is generally the first-line treatment for type 2 diabetes, but patients often require multidrug therapy to achieve glycemic control. This Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics article summarizes clinical data and adverse effects for 2 newly approved fixed-dose drug combinations: metformin with canagliflozin and metformin with dapagliflozin.