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These stories were released by CFAH’s Health Behavior News Service (HBNS) between 7/09/13 and 7/23/13. HBNS provides high-quality reports on new scientific studies that can help you make good choices about your health and the health of your family.

Men opt for PSA test, despite guidelines…

Despite recent recommendations by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPTF) against men getting the prostate-specific antigen test (PSA), more than half of men surveyed say they still want it, according to a study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine. Research has shown that the benefits of testing do not outweigh the risks, which include false positive results, but, comments lead author Linda Squiers, Ph.D., senior health communication scientist at RTI International in Rockville, MD, “Our culture is very pro screening. The idea that screening is beneficial and essential has been drilled into all of us.”

Obesity an added burden for people with disabilities…

Obesity disproportionately affects people with disabilities, which affects their mobility, finds a new study. The study found that 41.6 percent of people with disabilities were obese and 9.3 percent were extremely obese. In contrast, 29.2 percent of those without a disability were obese and 3.9 percent extremely obese. “Physical activity and exercise are critical to weight management, and those with disabilities should also be as active as they can within the limits of their function and health,” said lead author Katherine Froehlich-Grobe, Ph.D., associate professor at University of Texas School of Public Health in Dallas. “Common forms of exercise and activity [include] walking or bicycling, so the problem faced by providers is knowing what to recommend to those who face mobility issues and for whom walking is neither feasible or advisable.” The study appears in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Minorities not getting mental health care…

A survey of over 47,000 people found that Blacks and Latinos seek help for mental illness less often than Whites. Minorities that do seek help remain in treatment for a shorter period of time, leading to less adequate care.  “Access drives quality of mental health care, and improved quality is needed, but education and engagement are vitally important,” comments Erica Ahmed, director of public education at Mental Health America in Alexandria, Virginia, who was not affiliated with the study. Mental health literacy is complex and engagement is contingent on many factors like poverty, citizenship, race and isolation, said Ahmed. The study appears in Health Services Research.

Economic downturns affect preventive care…

Rising unemployment can lead to fewer doctor visits, finds a new study in Health Services Research. The study found that a one percent increase in state unemployment corresponded to a 1.58 percent reduction in the use of preventive health care services such as mammograms, pap tests, and annual check-ups. Health care providers should consider factors such as economic downturns when advising patients about preventive care or exams to ensure that they make the best choices, the researchers say. “If patients are under financial or other distress and decide that they need to forego some treatments, then their doctor could play a crucial role in helping them think through that decision,” said lead author Nathan Tefft, Ph.D., assistant professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Washington, Seattle.

More Blog Posts by Health Behavior News Service

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The Health Behavior News Service (HBNS), a division of the Center for Advancing Health, brings you the latest health behavior and patient engagement research from selected peer-reviewed journals. HBNS original stories summarize research findings including “Key Points” and are disseminated for free to the press and the public around the world.

Tags for this article:
Men's Health   Prostate Health   Minority Health and Health Disparities   Lifestyle and Prevention   Get Preventive Health Care  

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