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BPJ 17 October 2008

Best Practice Journal

Prevention of osteoporosis

Osteoporosis and subsequent fracture may be prevented by maintaining adequate calcium and vitamin D levels, undertaking regular weight bearing exercise and not smoking. Bisphosphonates can decrease the incidence of fracture in people with established osteoporosis. View Article

Symptomatic management of osteoarthritis

The key treatment of osteoarthritis is to provide information and resources that help patients to cope, including advice on exercise and weight loss. Safe pharmacological options include paracetamol, topical NSAIDs and capsaicin. If pain is not controlled, oral NSAIDs, opioids, steroid injections and ultimately surgical options, can be considered. View Article

Rheumatoid arthritis - monitoring of DMARDs

Most people with rheumatoid arthritis require early treatment with disease modifying-anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD) therapy to control symptoms and prevent joint damage. Treatment is usually initiated by a specialist, but GPs play an important role in monitoring patients for adverse effects and drug interactions. This article includes a pull out DMARD monitoring table and information on tumour necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitors. View Article

Assessing cardiovascular disease risk

New PHO Performance indicators announced.
GPs experiences of cardiovascular risk assessment.
Finding the best approach to CVD screening in your practice.
View Article

Communicating cardiovascular risk - getting your message across

Many GPs find it difficult to explain CVD risk to their patients. Patients who do not understand about their risk are not motivated to make changes to reduce their risk. We present some practical solutions for clearer communication of CVD risk. View Article

Motivational interviewing

An overview of a technique that can be used to help people make changes in their behaviour. View Article

Engaging patients in managing cardiovascular risk

Once a patient understands their CVD risk, the next step is to help motivate them to make changes to reduce their risk. Lifestyle modification is usually best approached by making small changes over time and setting realistic health goals. View Article

Patients understanding of cholesterol

A summary of the findings of a recent study which raises questions about how much people understand about cholesterol and its effect on health. View Article

Upfront: Cardiovascular risk screening

Professor Rod Jackson and Professor Simon Capewell debate screening of high risk individuals v population wide strategies for cardiovascular risk. View Article

Quiz feedback: Special foods and nutrition

In BPJ 15 (August 2008) we covered several topics about nutrition and prescription special foods including how to select an appropriate infant formula, nutrition for people with diabetes, COPD and coeliac disease, strategies to improve nutrition in elderly people and requirements for vitamins and minerals. View Article

Safe Prescribing of Morphine in Primary Care

Advice from the 'Safe and Quality Use of Medicines Group'. View Article