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The recommendations of the Association for European Paediatric and Congenital Cardiology for basic training in paediatric and congenital cardiology required to be recognised as a paediatric cardiologist by the Association for European Paediatric and Congenital Cardiology are described below. Those wishing to achieve more advanced training in particular areas of paediatric cardiology should consult the training recommendations of the different Association for European Paediatric and Congenital Cardiology Working Groups available on the Association for European Paediatric and Congenital Cardiology website (www.aepc.org) and the respective publications 1–6. The development of training requirements is the responsibility of the Educational Committee and the Association for European Paediatric and Congenital Cardiology Council in collaboration with the Working Groups of the Association for European Paediatric and Congenital Cardiology. Trainees should be exposed to all aspects of general paediatric and congenital cardiology from fetal life to adolescence and adulthood. Centres performing generalised and specialised work in paediatric and congenital cardiology should be committed to deliver postgraduate training. At each training institute, trainers should be appointed to supervise and act as mentors to the trainees. Association for European Paediatric and Congenital Cardiology will provide basic teaching courses to supplement the training process.
Barium titanate (BTO) is a ferroelectric perovskite with potential in energy storage applications. Previous research suggests that BTO dielectric constant increases as nanoparticle diameter decreases. This report recounts an investigation of this relationship. Injection-molded nanocomposites of 5 vol% BTO nanoparticles incorporated in a low-density polyethylene matrix were fabricated and measured. Finite-element analysis was used to model nanocomposites of all BTO sizes and the results were compared with experimental data. Both indicated a negligible relationship between BTO diameter and dielectric constant at 5 vol%. However, a path for fabricating and testing composites of 30 vol% and higher is presented here.
The advancement of lead-free piezoelectric nanogenerators (PENGs) for flexible electronics necessitates designing more efficient systems for improved energy storage capacity. In this light, the effects of patterning BaTiO3 nanotubes within PENG on the electromechanical properties of the device were investigated. The PENGs comprised a sandwich structure of Ti–BaTiO3–graphite–Ti encapsulated in polydimethylsiloxane. Four patterns of vertically aligned BaTiO3 nanotubes were synthesized via the hydrothermal conversion of selectively-anodized TiO2 nanotubes. The highest output voltage reached up to 1.9 V. Decreasing the nanotube array spacing and pattern diameter increased the lateral displacement of BaTiO3 therefore, increasing the output voltage of the device.
Attachment and companionship are fundamental basic needs of human beings and contribute the feeling of security and social affiliation. It is assumed that dysfunctional attachment behaviour in people with Borderline Personality Disorder leads to difficulties in the interpersonal contact. Unsecure and especially disorganized manners of attachment seem to be frequently represented by mentally ill people. In this study the release of oxytocin according to attachment relevant situations was investigated and attachment representations of people with BPD have been analysed.
In order to determine attachment representations of healthy people and of people with BPD we used the validated ‘Adult Attachment Projective’/ ‘AAP’ by George, West and Pettem (1999). The projective contains eight contour drawings of attachment relevant situations. The participant should make up a story of each picture, which was evaluated by its coherence, its content and the used defence mechanisms. Attachment representations of 30 patients with BPD were surveyed. Furthermore we measured the release of oxytocin evoked by an activation of the attachment system via the ‘AAP’ in 10 healthy people. Therefor blood drawings were performed at four different points of time.
Here, we present pilot data on oxytocin measures induced via the ‘AAP’. We could detect a decrease of oxytocin in healthy people caused by an activation of the attachment system. Moreover attachment representations of patients with BPD will be presented and discussed. These preliminary data could lead to further studies on a possible dysregulation of the attachment- and the oxytocin system of people with BPD.
Besides affective instability and identity diffusion, disturbances in social interactions are a core symptom of borderline personality disorder (BPD). Interpersonal problems in BPD have been suggested to be associated with oxytocin dysregulation. To directly address this hypothesis, we investigated oxytocin plasma levels during a social exclusion (ostracism) paradigm in female BPD patients.
Twenty-two female BPD patients (diagnosed according to DSM-IV) and twenty-one healthy controls matched for gender, age, and education underwent repeated neuroendocrine measurements in a standardized laboratory setting during the Cyberball paradigm, a virtual balltossing game that evokes a social exclusion situation. Emotional reactions were assessed and oxytocin and cortisol levels measured at baseline and 5, 15, and 40 min after Cyberball.
After social exclusion, oxytocin plasma levels were lower in BPD patients than in healthy controls, whereas cortisol levels did not differ between groups. BPD patients showed distinct differences in emotion regulation compared to healthy participants and reacted to social exclusion with an increase of other-focused negative emotions, particularly anger and contempt.
Our pilot study suggests that the oxytocin system shows a differential response to social exclusion in BPD patients compared to healthy controls. This difference may be related to the high rejection sensitivity of BPD patients and their difficulties in resolving social conflict.
Early Intervention services with team-based intensive case management and family involvement are superior to standard treatment in reducing psychotic and negative symptoms and comorbid substance abuse and improving social functioning and user satisfaction. The results of the OPUS-trial will be presented together with meta-analyses based on similar trials. The implementation of OPUS all over Denmark will be presented together with the Danish OPUS-fidelity study. Specialized elements are being are being developed such as inclusion of new methods in CBT for psychotic and negative symptoms, neurocognitive and social cognitive training programs, interventions for supported employment and focus on physical health. Results of long term follow-up studies indicate that the prognosis of first episode psychosis is very diverse with the extremes represented by one group being well functioning and able to quit medication without relapse; and another group having a long term chronic course of illness with a need for support to maintain daily activities. The Danish TAILOR-trial–testing dose reduction versus maintenance therapy will be presented. It will be of immense value to be able to intervene in risk groups identified in the premorbid phase, and there are few examples of ongoing trial for children of parent with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
Optimal stroke care requires access to resources such as neuroimaging, acute revascularization, rehabilitation, and stroke prevention services, which may not be available in rural areas. We aimed to determine geographic access to stroke care for residents of rural communities in the province of Ontario, Canada.
We used the Ontario Road Network File database linked with the 2016 Ontario Acute Stroke Care Resource Inventory to estimate the proportion of people in rural communities, defined as those with a population size <10,000, who were within 30, 60, and 240 minutes of travel time by car from stroke care services, including brain imaging, thrombolysis treatment centers, stroke units, stroke prevention clinics, inpatient rehabilitation facilities, and endovascular treatment centers.
Of the 1,496,262 people residing in rural communities, the majority resided within 60 minutes of driving time to a center with computed tomography (85%), thrombolysis (81%), a stroke unit (68%), a stroke prevention clinic (74%), or inpatient rehabilitation (77.0%), but a much lower proportion (32%) were within 60 minutes of driving time to a center capable of providing endovascular thrombectomy (EVT).
Most rural Ontario residents have appropriate geographic access to stroke services, with the exception of EVT. This information may be useful for jurisdictions seeking to optimize the regional organization of stroke care services.
Decisions on the use of nature reflect the values and rights of individuals, communities and society at large. The values of nature are expressed through cultural norms, rules and legislation, and they can be elicited using a wide range of tools, including those of economics. None of the approaches to elicit peoples’ values are neutral. Unequal power relations influence valuation and decision-making and are at the core of most environmental conflicts. As actors in sustainability thinking, environmental scientists and practitioners are becoming more aware of their own posture, normative stance, responsibility and relative power in society. Based on a transdisciplinary workshop, our perspective paper provides a normative basis for this new community of scientists and practitioners engaged in the plural valuation of nature.
Pulmonary hypertension is a complex and progressive condition that is either idiopathic or heritable, or associated with one or multiple health conditions, with or without congenital or acquired cardiovascular disease. Recent developments have tremendously increased the armamentarium of diagnostic and therapeutic approaches in children and young adults with pulmonary hypertension that is still associated with a high morbidity and mortality. These modalities include non-invasive imaging, pharmacotherapy, interventional and surgical procedures, and supportive measures. The optimal, tailored diagnostic and therapeutic strategies for pulmonary hypertension in the young are rapidly evolving but still face enormous challenges: Healthcare providers need to take the patient’s age, development, disease state, and family concerns into account when initiating advanced diagnostics and treatment. Therefore, there is a need for guidance on core and advanced medical training in paediatric pulmonary hypertension. The Association for European Paediatric and Congenital Cardiology working group “pulmonary hypertension, heart failure and transplantation” has produced this document as an expert consensus statement; however, all recommendations must be considered and applied in the context of the local and national infrastructure and legal regulations.
For many species abundance data from across their entire range are incomplete, and therefore it is difficult to accurately assess their conservation status. Even for species that are large, charismatic and relatively easy to study, conservation assessments are often hampered by lack of data. Here we report a marked, previously undescribed, increase in numbers at a breeding colony of the loggerhead turtle Caretta caretta, a species that is Critically Endangered in several parts of its range, and place this report in the global context for this species. We present a 10-year (2008–2017) dataset of nesting activities for this species on the island of Sal, one of the Cape Verde islands in the Atlantic Ocean. Foot patrols recorded 21,938 nests during the study period. We estimate that the annual number of nests on Sal increased from 506 in 2008 to 7,771 in 2017. Taking into account that there are only two known loggerhead turtle rookeries (on Masirah Island, Oman, and in Florida, USA) with > 50,000 nests reported annually, and few with > 1,000 nests per year, our results suggest that Sal is one of the 10 largest loggerhead turtle rookeries globally. Our work highlights the conservation significance of reporting trends in abundance at breeding sites for marine turtles and other taxa.
The design of government portfolios – that is, the distribution of competencies among government ministries and office holders – has been largely ignored in the study of executive and coalition politics. This article argues that portfolio design is a substantively and theoretically relevant phenomenon that has major implications for the study of institutional design and coalition politics. The authors use comparative data on portfolio design reforms in nine Western European countries since the 1970s to demonstrate how the design of government portfolios changes over time. Specifically, they show that portfolios are changed frequently (on average about once a year) and that such shifts are more likely after changes in the prime ministership or the party composition of the government. These findings suggest a political logic behind these reforms based on the preferences and power of political parties and politicians. They have major implications for the study of institutional design and coalition politics.
To examine factors that influence decision-making, preferences, and plans related to advance care planning (ACP) and end-of-life care among persons with dementia and their caregivers, and examine how these may differ by race.
13 geographically dispersed Alzheimer’s Disease Centers across the United States.
431 racially diverse caregivers of persons with dementia.
Survey on “Care Planning for Individuals with Dementia.”
The respondents were knowledgeable about dementia and hospice care, indicated the person with dementia would want comfort care at the end stage of illness, and reported high levels of both legal ACP (e.g., living will; 87%) and informal ACP discussions (79%) for the person with dementia. However, notable racial differences were present. Relative to white persons with dementia, African American persons with dementia were reported to have a lower preference for comfort care (81% vs. 58%) and lower rates of completion of legal ACP (89% vs. 73%). Racial differences in ACP and care preferences were also reflected in geographic differences. Additionally, African American study partners had a lower level of knowledge about dementia and reported a greater influence of religious/spiritual beliefs on the desired types of medical treatments. Notably, all respondents indicated that more information about the stages of dementia and end-of-life health care options would be helpful.
Educational programs may be useful in reducing racial differences in attitudes towards ACP. These programs could focus on the clinical course of dementia and issues related to end-of-life care, including the importance of ACP.
To assess the psychological impact of a mass casualty incident (MCI) in a subset of personnel in a level I hospital.
Emergency department staff responded to an MCI in June 2017 in Turin, Italy by an unexpected sudden surge of casualties following a stampede (mass escape). Participants completed the Psychological Simple Triage and Rapid Treatment Responder Self-Triage System (PsySTART-R), which classified the potential risk of psychological distress in “no risk” versus “at risk” categorization and identified a range of impacts aggregated for the population of medical responders. Participants were administered a questionnaire on the perceived effectiveness of management of the MCI. Two months later, the participants were evaluated using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS), the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale (K6), and the Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Checklist (PCL-5).
The majority of the responders were classified as “no risk” by the PsySTART-R; no significant differences on HADS, K6, and PCL-5 were found in the participants grouped by the PsySTART-R categories. The personnel acquainted to work in emergency contexts (emergency department and intensive care unit) scored significantly lower in the HADS than the personnel usually working in other wards. The number of positive PsySTART-R criteria correlated with the HADS depression score.
Most of the adverse psychological implications of the MCI were well handled and averted by the responders. A possible explanation could be related to factors such as the clinical condition of the victims (most were not severely injured, no fatalities), the small number of casualties (87) brought to the hospital, the event not being considered life-threatening, and its brief duration, among others. Responders had mainly to cope with a sudden surge in casualties and with organizational issues.
Attention Bias Modification (ABM) targets attention bias (AB) towards threat, which is common in youth with anxiety disorders. Previous clinical trials showed inconsistent results regarding the efficacy of ABM, and few studies have examined the effect of online ABM and its augmented effect with cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). The aim of the current study was to examine the efficacy of online ABM combined with CBT for children and adolescents with anxiety disorders in a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Children (aged 8–16 years) completed nine online sessions of ABM (n = 28) or online sessions of the Attention Control Condition (ACC; n = 27) over a period of 3 weeks (modified dot-probe task with anxiety disorder-congruent stimuli), followed by CBT. Primary outcomes were clinician-reported anxiety disorder status. Secondary outcomes were patient-reported anxiety and depression symptoms and AB. Results showed a continuous decrease across time in primary and secondary outcomes (ps < .001). However, no differences across time between the ABM and ACC group were found (ps > .50). Baseline AB and age did not moderate treatment effects. Online ABM combined with CBT does not show different efficacy compared with online ACC with CBT for children and adolescents with anxiety disorders.
Age at sexual debut is known to have implications for future sexual behaviours and health outcomes, including HIV infection, early pregnancy and maternal mortality, but may also influence educational outcomes. Longitudinal data on schooling and sexual behaviour from a demographic surveillance site in Karonga district, northern Malawi, were analysed for 3153 respondents between the ages of 12 and 25 years to examine the association between sexual debut and primary school dropout, and the role of prior school performance. Time to dropout was modelled using the Fine and Gray survival model to account for the competing event of primary school completion. To deal with the time-varying nature of age at sexual debut and school performance, models were fitted using landmark analyses. Sexual debut was found to be associated with a five-fold increase in rate of subsequent dropout for girls and a two-fold increase in dropout rate for boys (adjusted hazard ratio [aHR] of 5.27, CI 4.22–6.57, and 2.19, CI 1.77–2.7, respectively). For girls who were sexually active by age 16, only 16% ultimately completed primary schooling, compared with 70% aged 18 or older at sexual debut. Prior to sexual debut, girls had primary completion levels similar to those of boys. The association between sexual debut and school dropout could not be explained by prior poor school performance: the effect of sexual debut on dropout was as strong among those who were not behind in school as among those who were overage for their school grade. Girls who were sexually active were more likely to repeat a grade, with no effect being seen for boys. Pathways to dropout are complex and may differ for boys and girls. Interventions are needed to improve school progression so children complete primary school before sexual debut, and to improve sex education and contraception provision.
Cannabis hyperemesis syndrome is characterized by bouts of protracted vomiting in regular users of cannabis. We wondered whether this poorly understood condition is idiosyncratic, like motion sickness or hyperemesis gravidarum, or the predictable dose-response effect of prolonged heavy use.
Adults with an emergency department visit diagnosed as cannabis hyperemesis syndrome, near-daily use of cannabis for ≥6 months, and ≥2 episodes of severe vomiting in the previous year were age- and sex-matched to two control groups: RU controls (recreational users without vomiting), and ED controls (patients in the emergency department for an unrelated condition). Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabinol (CBN), cannabidiol, and 11-nor-9-carboxy-THC concentrations in scalp hair were compared for subjects with positive urine THC.
We obtained satisfactory hair samples from 46 subjects with positive urine THC: 16 cases (age 26.8 ± 9.2 years; 69% male), 16 RU controls and 14 ED controls. Hair cannabinoid concentrations were similar between all three groups (e.g. cases THC 220 [median; IQR 100,730] pg/mg hair, RU controls 150 [71,320] and ED controls 270 [120,560]). Only the THC:CBN ratio was different between groups, with a 2.6-fold (95%CI 1.3,5.7) lower age- and sex-adjusted ratio in cases than RU controls. Hair cannabidiol concentrations were often unquantifiably low in all subjects.
Similar hair cannabinoid concentrations in recreational users with and without hyperemesis suggest that heavy use is necessary but not sufficient for hyperemesis cannabis. Our results underline the high prevalence of chronic heavy cannabis use in emergency department patients and our limited understanding of this plant's adverse effects.
Research suggests an association between metabolic disorders, such as type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), and schizophrenia. However, the risk of metabolic disorders in the unaffected siblings of patients with schizophrenia remains unclear.
Using the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database, 3135 unaffected siblings of schizophrenia probands and 12,540 age-/sex-matched control subjects were included and followed up to the end of 2011. Individuals who developed metabolic disorders during the follow-up period were identified.
The unaffected siblings of schizophrenia probands had a higher prevalence of T2DM (3.4% vs. 2.6%, p = 0.010) than the controls. Logistic regression analyses with the adjustment of demographic data revealed that the unaffected siblings of patients with schizophrenia were more likely to develop T2DM (odds ratio [OR]: 1.39, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.10–1.75) later in life compared with the control group. Moreover, only female siblings of schizophrenia probands had an increased risk of hypertension (OR: 1.47, 95% CI: 1.07–2.01) during the follow-up compared with the controls.
The unaffected siblings, especially sisters, of schizophrenia probands had a higher prevalence of T2DM and hypertension compared with the controls. Our study revealed a familial link between schizophrenia and T2DM in a large sample. Additional studies are required to investigate the shared pathophysiology of schizophrenia and T2DM.
The role that vitamin D plays in pulmonary function remains uncertain. Epidemiological studies reported mixed findings for serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D)–pulmonary function association. We conducted the largest cross-sectional meta-analysis of the 25(OH)D–pulmonary function association to date, based on nine European ancestry (EA) cohorts (n 22 838) and five African ancestry (AA) cohorts (n 4290) in the Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genomic Epidemiology Consortium. Data were analysed using linear models by cohort and ancestry. Effect modification by smoking status (current/former/never) was tested. Results were combined using fixed-effects meta-analysis. Mean serum 25(OH)D was 68 (sd 29) nmol/l for EA and 49 (sd 21) nmol/l for AA. For each 1 nmol/l higher 25(OH)D, forced expiratory volume in the 1st second (FEV1) was higher by 1·1 ml in EA (95 % CI 0·9, 1·3; P<0·0001) and 1·8 ml (95 % CI 1·1, 2·5; P<0·0001) in AA (Prace difference=0·06), and forced vital capacity (FVC) was higher by 1·3 ml in EA (95 % CI 1·0, 1·6; P<0·0001) and 1·5 ml (95 % CI 0·8, 2·3; P=0·0001) in AA (Prace difference=0·56). Among EA, the 25(OH)D–FVC association was stronger in smokers: per 1 nmol/l higher 25(OH)D, FVC was higher by 1·7 ml (95 % CI 1·1, 2·3) for current smokers and 1·7 ml (95 % CI 1·2, 2·1) for former smokers, compared with 0·8 ml (95 % CI 0·4, 1·2) for never smokers. In summary, the 25(OH)D associations with FEV1 and FVC were positive in both ancestries. In EA, a stronger association was observed for smokers compared with never smokers, which supports the importance of vitamin D in vulnerable populations.
Adult schistosomes live in the blood vessels and cannot easily be sampled from humans, so archived miracidia larvae hatched from eggs expelled in feces or urine are commonly used for population genetic studies. Large collections of archived miracidia on FTA cards are now available through the Schistosomiasis Collection at the Natural History Museum (SCAN). Here we describe protocols for whole genome amplification of Schistosoma mansoni and Schistosome haematobium miracidia from these cards, as well as real time PCR quantification of amplified schistosome DNA. We used microgram quantities of DNA obtained for exome capture and sequencing of single miracidia, generating dense polymorphism data across the exome. These methods will facilitate the transition from population genetics, using limited numbers of markers to population genomics using genome-wide marker information, maximising the value of collections such as SCAN.