Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

medical staff pulse newsletter

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A BI-WEEKLY PUBLICATION FROM THE CEDARS-SINAI CHIEF OF STAFF Nov. 9, 2012, issue | Archived Issues

FDA conducting ongoing safety review of Mirapex

Pharmacy focus

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is alerting healthcare professionals about a possible increased risk of heart failure with Mirapex (pramipexole), which is used to treat the signs and symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.

» Read more


Meetings and events


Grand rounds

Click here to view upcoming grand rounds.


Upcoming CME conferences

Click below to view a complete list of all scheduled Continuing Medical Education conferences.

CME Newsletter - November 2012 (PDF)

Share Your News

Won any awards or had an article accepted for publication? Share your news about professional achievements and other items of interest.

Click here to share your news

Core Laboratory offers PSA reflexive panel

In response to requests from physicians, the Core Laboratory will offer a Prostate-Specific Antigen reflexive panel. When the reflexive algorithm is ordered, a total PSA value will be obtained. For total PSA values between 4 and10 ng/ml, a reflexive test for free PSA will be run.

The value of both free and total PSA will be accompanied by a comment to assist in determining risk based on age and race. Total and free PSA may still be ordered separately, but the Core Lab hopes the new approach will decrease unnecessary testing of free PSA.

This should be particularly useful in the outpatient setting, as the patient will only need a single draw and will not need to return for further testing of PSA.

In other news: Mayo Medical Laboratories has announced (effective Oct. 4) that the methodology for beta-hCG as a tumor marker has changed to a Roche Cobas immunoassay. Mayo Medical Laboratories has indicated that the results yielded may be lower with the new methodology and that re-baselining is available upon request.

You may contact the Core Lab's client services number, ext. 3-5431, with requests for re-baselining your patients. The new reference values are as follows:

Reference values

  • Children
    • Males
      • Birth to 3 months: < or =50IU/L*
      • >3 months to <18 years: <1.4 IU/L
    • Females
      • Birth to <18 years: <1.0 IU/L

*hCG, produced in the placenta, partially passes the placental barrier. Newborn serum beta-hCG concentrations are approximately 1/400 of the corresponding maternal serum concentrations, resulting in neonate beta-hCG levels of 10 to 50 IU/L at birth. Clearance half-life is approximately two to three days. By 3 months, levels comparable to adults should be reached.

  • Adults (97.5 percentile)
    • Males: <1.4 IU/L
    • Females
      • Premenopausal, nonpregnant: <1.0 IU/L
      • Postmenopausal: <7.0 IU/L