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Background: When control mechanisms such as water temperature and biocide level are insufficient, Legionella, the causative bacteria of Legionnaires’ disease, can proliferate in water distribution systems in buildings. Guidance and oversight bodies are increasingly prioritizing water safety programs in healthcare facilities to limit Legionella growth. However, ensuring optimal implementation in large buildings is challenging. Much is unknown, and sometimes assumed, about whether building and campus characteristics influence Legionella growth. We used an extensive real-world environmental Legionella data set in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) healthcare system to examine infrastructure characteristics and Legionella positivity. Methods: VHA medical facilities across the country perform quarterly potable water sampling of healthcare buildings for Legionella detection as part of a comprehensive water safety program. Results are reported to a standardized national database. We did an exploratory univariate analysis of facility-reported Legionella data from routine potable water samples taken in 2015 to 2018, in conjunction with infrastructure characteristics available in a separate national data set. This review examined the following characteristics: building height (number of floors), building age (reported construction year), and campus acreage. Results: The final data set included 201,936 water samples from 819 buildings. Buildings with 1–5 floors (n = 634) had a Legionella positivity rate of 5.3%, 6–10 floors (n = 104) had a rate of 6.4%, 11–15 floors (n = 36) had a rate of 8.1%, and 16–22 floors (n = 9) had a rate of 8.8%. All rates were significantly different from each other except 11–15 floors and 16–22 floors (P < .05, χ2). The oldest buildings (1800s) had significantly less (P < .05, χ2) Legionella positivity than those built between 1900 and 1939 and between 1940 and 1979, but they were no different than the newest buildings (Fig. 1). In newer buildings (1980–2019), all decades had buildings with Legionella positivity (Fig. 1 inset). Campus acreage varied from ~3 acres to almost 500 acres. Although significant differences were found in Legionella positivity for different campus sizes, there was no clear trend and campus acreage may not be a suitable proxy for the extent or complexity of water systems feeding buildings. Conclusions: The analysis of this large, real-world data set supports an assumption that taller buildings are more likely to be associated with Legionella detection, perhaps a result of more extensive piping. In contrast, the assumption that newer buildings are less associated with Legionella was not fully supported. These results demonstrate the variability in Legionella positivity in buildings, and they also provide evidence that can inform implementation of water safety programs.
Disclosures: Chetan Jinadatha, principal Investigator/Co-I: Research: NIH/NINR, AHRQ, NSF principal investigator: Research: Xenex Healthcare Services. Funds provided to institution. Inventor: Methods for organizing the disinfection of one or more items contaminated with biological agents. Owner: Department of Veterans Affairs. Licensed to Xenex Disinfection System, San Antonio, TX.
A scanning precession electron diffraction system has been integrated with a direct electron detector to allow the collection of improved quality diffraction patterns. This has been used on a two-phase α–β titanium alloy (Timetal® 575) for phase and orientation mapping using an existing pattern-matching algorithm and has been compared to the commonly used detector system, which consisted of a high-speed video-camera imaging the small phosphor focusing screen. Noise is appreciably lower with the direct electron detector, and this is especially noticeable further from the diffraction pattern center where the real electron scattering is reduced and both diffraction spots and inelastic scattering between spots are weaker. The results for orientation mapping are a significant improvement in phase and orientation indexing reliability, especially of fine nanoscale laths of α-Ti, where the weak diffracted signal is rather lost in the noise for the optically coupled camera. This was done at a dose of ~19 e−/Å2, and there is clearly a prospect for reducing the current further while still producing indexable patterns. This opens the way for precession diffraction phase and orientation mapping of radiation-sensitive crystalline materials.
Radiocarbon (14C) ages cannot provide absolutely dated chronologies for archaeological or paleoenvironmental studies directly but must be converted to calendar age equivalents using a calibration curve compensating for fluctuations in atmospheric 14C concentration. Although calibration curves are constructed from independently dated archives, they invariably require revision as new data become available and our understanding of the Earth system improves. In this volume the international 14C calibration curves for both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, as well as for the ocean surface layer, have been updated to include a wealth of new data and extended to 55,000 cal BP. Based on tree rings, IntCal20 now extends as a fully atmospheric record to ca. 13,900 cal BP. For the older part of the timescale, IntCal20 comprises statistically integrated evidence from floating tree-ring chronologies, lacustrine and marine sediments, speleothems, and corals. We utilized improved evaluation of the timescales and location variable 14C offsets from the atmosphere (reservoir age, dead carbon fraction) for each dataset. New statistical methods have refined the structure of the calibration curves while maintaining a robust treatment of uncertainties in the 14C ages, the calendar ages and other corrections. The inclusion of modeled marine reservoir ages derived from a three-dimensional ocean circulation model has allowed us to apply more appropriate reservoir corrections to the marine 14C data rather than the previous use of constant regional offsets from the atmosphere. Here we provide an overview of the new and revised datasets and the associated methods used for the construction of the IntCal20 curve and explore potential regional offsets for tree-ring data. We discuss the main differences with respect to the previous calibration curve, IntCal13, and some of the implications for archaeology and geosciences ranging from the recent past to the time of the extinction of the Neanderthals.
Lewy body dementia, consisting of both dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) and Parkinson's disease dementia (PDD), is considerably under-recognised clinically compared with its frequency in autopsy series.
This study investigated the clinical diagnostic pathways of patients with Lewy body dementia to assess if difficulties in diagnosis may be contributing to these differences.
We reviewed the medical notes of 74 people with DLB and 72 with non-DLB dementia matched for age, gender and cognitive performance, together with 38 people with PDD and 35 with Parkinson's disease, matched for age and gender, from two geographically distinct UK regions.
The cases of individuals with DLB took longer to reach a final diagnosis (1.2 v. 0.6 years, P = 0.017), underwent more scans (1.7 v. 1.2, P = 0.002) and had more alternative prior diagnoses (0.8 v. 0.4, P = 0.002), than the cases of those with non-DLB dementia. Individuals diagnosed in one region of the UK had significantly more core features (2.1 v. 1.5, P = 0.007) than those in the other region, and were less likely to have dopamine transporter imaging (P < 0.001). For patients with PDD, more than 1.4 years prior to receiving a dementia diagnosis: 46% (12 of 26) had documented impaired activities of daily living because of cognitive impairment, 57% (16 of 28) had cognitive impairment in multiple domains, with 38% (6 of 16) having both, and 39% (9 of 23) already receiving anti-dementia drugs.
Our results show the pathway to diagnosis of DLB is longer and more complex than for non-DLB dementia. There were also marked differences between regions in the thresholds clinicians adopt for diagnosing DLB and also in the use of dopamine transporter imaging. For PDD, a diagnosis of dementia was delayed well beyond symptom onset and even treatment.
Terrorist attacks have increased globally since the late 1990s with clear evidence of psychological distress across both adults and children and young people (CYP). After the Manchester Arena terrorist attack, the Resilience Hub was established to identify people in need of psychological and psychosocial support.
To examine the severity of symptoms and impact of the programme.
The hub offers outreach, screening, clinical telephone triage and facilitation to access evidenced treatments. People were screened for trauma, depression, generalised anxiety and functioning who registered at 3, 6 and 9 months post-incident. Baseline scores were compared between screening groups (first screen at 3, 6 or 9 months) in each cohort (adult, CYP), and within groups to compare scores at 9 months.
There were significant differences in adults' baseline scores across screening groups on trauma, depression, anxiety and functioning. There were significant differences in the baseline scores of CYP across screening groups on trauma, depression, generalised anxiety and separation anxiety. Paired samples t-tests demonstrated significant differences between baseline and follow-up scores on all measures for adults in the 3-month screening group, and only depression and functioning measures for adults in the 6-month screening group. Data about CYP in the 3-month screening group, demonstrated significant differences between baseline and follow-up scores on trauma, generalised anxiety and separation anxiety.
These findings suggest people who register earlier are less symptomatic and demonstrate greater improvement across a range of psychological measures. Further longitudinal research is necessary to understand changes over time.
The Comprehensive Assessment of Neurodegeneration and Dementia (COMPASS-ND) cohort study of the Canadian Consortium on Neurodegeneration in Aging (CCNA) is a national initiative to catalyze research on dementia, set up to support the research agendas of CCNA teams. This cross-country longitudinal cohort of 2310 deeply phenotyped subjects with various forms of dementia and mild memory loss or concerns, along with cognitively intact elderly subjects, will test hypotheses generated by these teams.
The COMPASS-ND protocol, initial grant proposal for funding, fifth semi-annual CCNA Progress Report submitted to the Canadian Institutes of Health Research December 2017, and other documents supplemented by modifications made and lessons learned after implementation were used by the authors to create the description of the study provided here.
The CCNA COMPASS-ND cohort includes participants from across Canada with various cognitive conditions associated with or at risk of neurodegenerative diseases. They will undergo a wide range of experimental, clinical, imaging, and genetic investigation to specifically address the causes, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of these conditions in the aging population. Data derived from clinical and cognitive assessments, biospecimens, brain imaging, genetics, and brain donations will be used to test hypotheses generated by CCNA research teams and other Canadian researchers. The study is the most comprehensive and ambitious Canadian study of dementia. Initial data posting occurred in 2018, with the full cohort to be accrued by 2020.
Availability of data from the COMPASS-ND study will provide a major stimulus for dementia research in Canada in the coming years.
It has become clear that disaster relief needs to transition from good intentions or a charity-based approach to a professional, outcome-oriented response. The practice of medicine in disaster and conflict is a profession practiced in environments where lack of resources, chaos, and unpredictability are the norm rather than the exception. With this consideration in mind, the World Health Organization (WHO; Geneva, Switzerland) and its partners set out to improve the disaster response systems. The resulting Emergency Medical Team (EMT) classification system requires that teams planning on engaging in disaster response follow common standards for the delivery of care in resource-constraint environments. In order to clarify these standards, the WHO EMT Secretariat collaborated with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC; Geneva, Switzerland) and leading experts from other stakeholder non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to produce a guide to the management of limb injuries in disaster and conflict.
The resulting text is a free and open-access resource to provide guidance for national and international EMTs caring for patients in disasters and conflicts. The content is a result of expert consensus, literature review, and an iterative process designed to encourage debate and resolution of existing open questions within the field of disaster and conflict medical response.
The end result of this process is a text providing guidance to providers seeking to deliver safe, effective care within the EMT framework that is now part of the EMT training and verification system and is being distributed to ICRC teams deploying to the field.
This work seeks to encourage professionalization of the field of disaster and conflict response, and to contribute to the existing EMT framework, in order to provide for better care for future victims of disaster and conflict.
Jensen G, Bar-On E, Wiedler JT, Hautz SC, Veen H, Kay AR, Norton I, Gosselin RA, von Schreeb J. Improving management of limb injuries in disasters and conflicts. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2019;34(3):330–334.
The association of sleep disorders and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is almost universal. Nightmares are not only one of the most commonly associated but also featured as a diagnostic criterion for PTSD. PTSD-related nightmares are particularly distressing, may impair functioning and increase risk of suicide. No specific pharmacologic agent has been demonstrated to impair dreaming. Inhibition of PTSD-related nightmares with pramipexole has not heretofore been described. Such a case is presented.
Case study - This 60 year-old male with PTSD and trauma-related nightmares upon introduction of pramipexole 0.5mg PO qHS for Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) had total elimination of dreams, which recurred upon discontinuation of this agent as a result of insomnia and increased anxiety. A lower dose of 0.375mg qHS provided optimal RLS-symptom control and overall improved tolerance despite nightmare recurrence.
Abnormalities on Neurological examination: Recent recall: 2 of 4 objects without improvement with reinforcement. Able to spell the word “world” forwards but not backwards. Abstract thought impaired. Chemosensory testing: Anosmia and normogeusia. Motor: Drift: mild right pronator drift with right cerebellar spooning and right abductor digiti minimi sign. Reflexes: 3+ brachioradialis and biceps bilaterally, absent ankle jerks. Other: CT scan with and without contrast: normal.
Nightmares related to PTSD may occur during Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep and non-REM sleep. Underlying sympathetic activation may lead to disruptive motor behavior similar to that seen in REM sleep behavior disorder. The exact mechanism of action by which inhibition of dreams occurred with use of pramipexole is unclear. Such a response is consistent with prior documented evidence of REM sleep suppression with low-dose pramipexole such as it‘s efficacy in reducing the intensity and frequency of nightmares and dream enactment related to REM sleep behavior disorder. Further research on therapeutic interventions that target nightmares directly may be beneficial for the management of patients with PTSD.