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BPJ 34 February 2011

Best Practice Journal

Managing dyspepsia and heartburn in general practice - an update

Dyspepsia is not a diagnosis but rather a description of symptoms that may indicate disease of the upper gastrointestinal tract. However, in the majority of cases there is no clear pathological cause. The initial assessment of a patient with dyspepsia involves ruling out any “alarm features” which may indicate more serious underlying pathology. View Article

Detecting malignant melanoma

New Zealand has one of the highest rates of melanoma in the world. Melanoma is the most common cancer among New Zealand men aged 25 to 44 years. Primary care plays an important role in early detection. Clinicians should be aware of the clinical signs of melanoma and encourage patients to report any suspicious skin lesions. View Article

Increasing the uptake of breast screening

Significant progress has been made in increasing the rate of breast cancer screening in New Zealand. However, Māori women still have a higher rate of developing and dying from breast cancer than non-Māori. There are several methods that practices can undertake to increase breast screening rates. View Article

Upfront: Antimicrobial resistance - the way forward

In this final article in the series on antimicrobial resistance, we look at the way foward. Lessons learned from international interventions can be combined with local ideas for a co-ordinated national approach to address this evolving issue. View Article

Methotrexate prescribing errors can be fatal

When used and monitored correctly methotrexate can be an effective and safe treatment, however, if an error occurs and it is taken as a daily dose rather than a once weekly dose it can be fatal. View Article

Successful initiatives in men's health

We present some responses received following our 2010 article "What's up with the men folk?" View Article

News in brief

Changes to nicotine replacement therapy prescriptions | Topical acne treatment adapalene now fully funded | Escitalopram and sertraline available and fully funded from 1 December 2010 | An alternative to combivent: Duolin HFA funded from 1 February 2011 | Removal of month restriction for anxiolytics, sedatives and hypnotics View Article