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CARPHOLOGY by Rajendra

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TOPIRAMATE AND ALCOHOL DEPENDENCE

Topiramate may have another use. It was found to reduce heavy drinking days in a 14-week double blind, randomised, placebo controlled trial including 371 men and women with alcohol dependence (mean difference 8.44%; 95% CI 3.07% to 13.80%; p = 0.002). The primary outcome measure was self-reported heavy drinking days, but plasma gamma-glutamyltransferase was also measured. Adverse events included paraesthesias, taste perversion, anorexia, and difficulty with concentration. The authors (one of whom is a consultant to the manufacturers of topiramate) say that the results of the trial may not be generalisable to patients outside the trial, who may be less healthy than those in the trial.

JAMA 2007;298:1641–51.

BOXING AND BRAIN DAMAGE

A systematic review of observational studies finds no strong evidence to associate amateur boxing with chronic traumatic brain injury. A total of 36 papers had extractable data, but most studies were of poor quality. Only four of 17 better quality studies found any indication of chronic traumatic …

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