Homepage Round-Up: Excessive Social Media Use Among Adolescents Linked to Mental Health Problems, Many Physicians Lack Knowledge Regarding Diabetes Prevention, and More.

Here are the top stories covered by DocWire News this week in the Homepage section. In this week’s edition of the round-up: excessive social media use may cause mental health problems in adolescents, many primary care physicians’ knowledge of preventing diabetes is lacking, ethnic minorities are more likely to be transported to safety-net hospitals, and researchers have found fat-laden cells in the lungs of patients with the mysterious vaping illness.

Adolescents who spend more than three hours a day on social media are susceptible to developing mental health problems, particularly internalized problems like depression and anxiety, according to a new study published in JAMA Psychiatry. In a longitudinal cohort study, researchers assessed a total of 6,595 participants from waves 1 and 3 of the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health study. According to the results of the study, spending more than 30 minutes of time on social media, compared with no use, was associated with increased risk of internalizing problems alone.

The findings of a survey published by researchers from John Hopkins Medicine in the Journal of General Internal Medicine (JGIM) reveal significant gaps in primary care physicians (PCPs) overall knowledge of risk factors, diagnostic criteria and recommended management and prevention of prediabetes. In this study, researchers sent surveys to 1,000 PCPs selected from the American Medical Association’s Physician Masterfile, comprised of data on more than 1.4 million physicians, residents and medical students in the United States. According to the study results, on average, respondents selected just 10 out of 15 correct risk factors for prediabetes, most often missing that African Americans and Native Americans are two groups at high risk.

Black and Hispanic patients are more likely to be transported by emergency medical services (EMS) to a safety-net hospital emergency department (ED) than white patients living in the same area, according to a study published in JAMA Network Open. In this cohort study, researchers assessed 864,750 Medicare enrollees from 4,175 selected zip codes who had 458,701 EF visits by way of EMS transport from January 2006 to December 2012. The results indicate that Black and Hispanic patients were more likely to be transported to a safety-net ED compared with their white counterparts.

Researchers from University of Utah (U of U) Health have characterized the nascent respiratory illness associated with e-cigarette vaping by the presence of fat-laden cells, which they identified with the use of oil red O staining tests. The findings, which may enable physicians to accurately diagnose the syndrome, were published in The New England Journal of Medicine. “While it is too soon to be sure, these lipid-laden macrophages may turn out to be useful to confirm or rule out this disease,” said the study’s senior author Scott Aberegg, M.D., a critical care pulmonologist at U of U Health in a press release about the findings. “They may also be helpful in understanding what is causing this illness.”