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BPJ 43 April 2012

Best Practice Journal

Diagnosis and treatment of urticaria

Urticaria is a common condition, which is usually non-allergenic, but in the majority of patients a specific cause will not be found. Extensive diagnostic testing is not recommended unless there is strong evidence to suspect a specific trigger. Treatment is aimed at symptom relief, using oral non-sedating antihistamines first-line. Additional medicines can be added, depending on the severity and duration of symptoms. Most cases of urticaria are acute, however, in some cases, episodes may occur over several months or even years. View Article

Diagnosis and management of COPD in Māori and Pacific peoples

COPD disproportionately affects Māori and Pacific peoples in New Zealand. It is essential that people most at risk of COPD receive support and education about smoking cessation, the impact of COPD and the importance of early detection. Spirometry is the "gold standard" test for diagnosing COPD. Management focuses on smoking cessation, pharmacological treatment, pulmonary rehabilitation and psychosocial support.

There is newer/updated information related to this article: The optimal management of patients with COPD

View Article

Seasonal influenza vaccinations: the 2012 edition

The 2012 seasonal influenza vaccine contains the same strains as in previous years, however, annual vaccination is still necessary. It is important that people most at risk of complications of influenza, such as people aged over 65 years and pregnant women, receive the influenza vaccine. Although not funded, vaccination is encouraged for children aged between six months and five years as this age group is also vulnerable to complications of influenza. View Article

The HPV vaccination programme: addressing low uptake

The human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine was added to the national immunisation schedule in 2008 for females aged 12 years. The vaccine is funded for females aged between 12 and 20 years. So far, uptake of the school-based vaccination programme has been lower than expected, therefore primary health care providers are encouraged to offer information, address any fears or concerns and promote uptake of the vaccine. Although not funded, the vaccine can also be given to males and older females. View Article

New Zealand Formulary – coming soon

About the NZF Governance The clinical editorial team View Article

Appropriate use of metronidazole

How does metronidazole work? | Which infections should metronidazole be used for? | First line indications for metronidazole | Second line indications for metronidazole | Issues associated with metronidazole View Article