AANEM Practice News Express

AANEM News Express

Correcting Neuromuscular Deficits with Gene Therapy in Pompe disease

This  study in Annals of Neurology supports further exploration of AAV-based gene therapy in the treatment of Pompe Disease.

2016 Fee Schedule—What Does This Mean for Reimbursement?

On On October 30, 2015, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released the Final Rule for the 2016 Medicare Physician Payment Schedule. Within this document and addendum are updates to the relative value units (RVU), which include work RVUs, practice expense (PE) RVUs, malpractice (MP) RVUs, as well as the proposed Medicare conversion factor.

2016 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule

On October 30, 2016, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released the Final Rule for the 2016 Medicare Physician Payment Schedule. Following is a summary of some of the changes that could affect AANEM members for the calendar year (CY) 2016.

Lumbar Intradiscal Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Injections: A Prospective, Double-blind, Randomized Controlled Study

This double-blind, randomized controlled study in PM&R shows promising early results for platelet rich plasma (PRP) injections for chronic lower back pain.

Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of ESIs for Radiculopathy and Spinal Stenosis

This review in the Annals of Internal Medicine of 30 placebo-controlled trials on epidural corticosteroid injections (ESIs) for radiculopathy and 8 trials for spinal stenosis calls into question the increasing use of ESIs for common diagnoses of radiculopathy and spinal stenosis.

Safety and Efficacy of Diaphragm Pacing in ALS Patients

Effective treatments for ALS are aggressively sought, and diaphragmatic pacing received expedited approval by the US FDA based on a single multi-center study. This study in Lancet Neurology, however, demonstrated that diaphragmatic pacing reduced survival in ALS patients.

CIDP diagnostic pitfalls and perception of treatment benefit

This important study from Neurology demonstrates the troubling frequency with which patients are misdiagnosed with CIDP and even treated with immunotherapy. Neuromuscular subspecialty referral and closer adherence to published guidelines would reduce this problem considerably, though likely not eliminate it.

Guideline Released for Facioscapulohumeral Muscular Dystrophy (FSHD)

A new guideline from the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) and the American Association of Neuromuscular & Electrodiagnostic Medicine (AANEM) looks at the scientific studies on facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy (FSHD).  This new guideline is based on the best available studies on FSHD, and can inform the public and clinicians about the best approach to managing and treating this disease. 

2016 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule: Proposed Rule Released

On July 8, 2015, CMS issued a
proposed rule updating payment policies, rates, and quality provisions for physicians under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) in 2016.  According to the proposed rule, CMS projects minimal impact on neuromuscular and electrodiagnostic physicians.

UPDATE: “Job Descriptions for NCS Technologists”

The AANEM Professional Practice Committee, in coordination with members of the AANEM Technologist Education Committee, recently revised AANEM’s prior position statement, “
Job Descriptions for Electrodiagnostic Technologists.”  The new version of the position statement, “Job Descriptions for NCS Technologists,” goes into much greater detail and adds many more levels of classification for technologists working in electrodiagnostic (EDX) laboratories.