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Caregiver symptom assessment is not part of regular clinical cancer care. The ESAS (Edmonton Symptom Assessment System) is a multidimensional tool regularly used to measure symptom burden in patients but not caregivers. The objectives of the present study were to determine the feasibility of the ESAS in caregiver completion (defined as ≥ 9 of 12 items) and determine its concurrent validity with the Zarit Burden Interview–12 (ZBI–12).
We conducted a prospective study on 90 patient–primary caregiver dyads seen in an outpatient supportive care center in a cancer center. The 12 item ESAS–FS (financial–spiritual) was completed by the dyads along with other clinical and psychosocial measures.
The caregiver ESAS was found to be feasible (90/90 caregivers, 100% completed ≥ 9/12 items) and useful (66/90 caregivers, 73%) by caregivers to report their symptom burden. Some 68 of 90 (76%) caregivers had symptom distress scores ≥ 4 on at least one symptom. A significant association was found between the ESAS scores of caregivers and patients for fatigue (0.03), depression (<0.01), anxiety (<0.01), sleep (0.05), well-being (<0.01), financial distress (<0.01), spiritual pain (<0.01), and total ESAS score (<0.01). Concurrent validity with the ZBI–12 was not achieved (r = 0.53, p = 0.74). A significant correlation was found between caregiver ESAS scores and time spent feeding, housekeeping, total combined caregiver activities, and total ZBI–12 scores.
Significance of results:
The caregiver ESAS is a feasible tool and was found useful by our caregivers. Further research is needed to modify the ESAS based on caregivers' recommendations, and further psychometric studies need to be conducted.
The turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) was independently domesticated in Mesoamerica and the Southwest, the latter as the only case of Native American animal domestication north of Mexico. In the upland (non-desert) portion of the American Southwest, distinctive closely related mtDNA lineages belonging to haplogroup H1 (thought to indicate domestication) occur from ca. 1 A.D. (Basketmaker II period) through early historic times. At many sites, low frequencies of lineages belonging to haplogroup H2 also occur, apparently derived from the local Merriam’s subspecies. We report genetic, stable isotope, and coprolite data from turkey remains recovered at three early sites in SE Utah and SW Colorado dating to the Basketmaker II, III, and early Pueblo II periods. Evidence from these and other early sites indicates that both the H1 and H2 turkeys had a predominantly maize-based diet similar to that of humans; prior to late Pueblo II times, the birds were kept primarily to provide feathers for blankets and ritual uses; and ritualized burials indicate turkeys’ symbolic value. We argue that viewing individuals from the H1 and H2 haplogroups as “domestic” versus “wild” is an oversimplification.
Richerson et al. argue that “cultural group selection plays an essential role in explaining human cooperation.” We believe that cooperation came first, making culture and thus cultural group selection possible. Cooperation and culture began – and begins – in mother–infant interaction.
There is no standardized and universally accepted pain classification system for the assessment and management of cancer pain in both clinical practice and research studies. The Edmonton Classification System for Cancer Pain (ECS–CP) is an assessment tool that has demonstrated value in assessing pain characteristics and response. The purpose of our study was to determine the relationship between negative ECS–CP features and some pain-related variables like pain intensity and opioid use. We also explored whether the number of negative ECS–CP features was associated with higher pain intensity.
The electronic charts of 100 patients at an outpatient supportive care clinic in a comprehensive cancer center were reviewed for variables like patient characteristics, initial ECS–CP assessment, morphine equivalent daily dose (MEDD), opioid rotation, Edmonton Symptom Assessment Score (ESAS), and use of adjuvant analgesics.
Some 91 of the 100 charts were eligible for analysis. The most common primary cancer type was gastrointestinal (22.1%). The median pain intensity was 6, and the median MEDD was 45 mg. Neuropathic pain was associated with higher median pain intensity (7 vs. 5, p = 0.007) and median MEDD requirement (83 vs. 30, p = 0.013). Psychological distress was associated with higher median pain intensity (7 vs. 5, p = 0.042). Incident pain was also associated with a trend toward higher pain intensity (6 vs. 5, p = 0.06). A higher number of negative ECS–CP features was associated with higher pain intensity (p = 0.01).
Significance of Results:
The ECS–CP was successfully completed in the majority of patients, demonstrating its utility in routine clinical practice. Neuropathic pain and psychological distress were associated with higher pain intensity. Also, neuropathic pain was associated with a higher MEDD. A higher sum of negative ECS–CP features was associated with higher pain intensity. Further studies will be needed to verify and explore these observations.
To describe the prevalence, characteristics, and appropriateness of systemic antibiotic use in assisted living (AL) and to conduct a preliminary quality improvement intervention trial to reduce inappropriate prescribing.
Pre-post study, with a 13-month intervention period.
Four AL communities.
All prescribers, all AL staff who communicate with prescribers, and all patients who had an infection during the baseline and intervention periods.
A standardized form for AL staff, an online education course and 5 practice briefs for prescribers, and monthly quality improvement meetings with AL staff.
Monthly inventory of all systemic antibiotic prescriptions; interviews with the prescriber, AL staff member, closest family member, and patient (when capable) regarding 85 antibiotic prescribing episodes (30 baseline, 55 intervention), with data review by an expert panel to determine prescribing appropriateness.
The mean number of systemic antibiotic prescriptions was 3.44 per 1,000 resident-days at baseline and 3.37 during the intervention, a nonsignificant change (P = .30). Few prescribers participated in online training. AL staff use of the standardized form gradually increased during the program. The proportion of prescriptions rated as probably inappropriate was 26% at baseline and 15% during the intervention, a nonsignificant trend (P = .25). Drug selection was largely appropriate during both time periods.
AL antibiotic prescribing rates appear to be approximately one-half those seen in nursing homes, with up to a quarter being potentially inappropriate. Interventions to improve prescribing must reach all physicians and staff and most likely will require long time periods to have the optimal effect.
A combinatorial workflow for developing organic surface coatings has been developed. The workflow is uniquely designed to prepare and evaluate marine coatings that prevent biofouling on the hulls of ships. A critical component of the workflow is the high throughput screening of settlement and ease of removal of marine organisms from coating surfaces. Methods have been developed to directly and indirectly quantify marine bacterial biofilm growth and retention. Correlations have been developed between these high throughput bioassays and results from ocean testing.
The York resource allocation formula includes a calculation of the amount needed to purchase mental health services equitably in each health authority in England. However, the amount which is actually spent on services is at the discretion of the authority.
To compare expenditure on mental health services with allocation, and test the hypothesis that differences between them are to the disadvantage of services in deprived areas.
A comparison of routine expenditure and allocation data, and linear regression modelling of the ratio of expenditure to allocation.
The ratio of expenditure to allocation varies widely. Relative underspending occurs more frequently in deprived areas, although not in the four inner-London health authorities.
The intentions of the York formula are not achieved in practice. The implications of the formula for mental health should be made explicit to health authorities, and shortfalls in mental health expenditure relative to allocation should be justified at a local level.
Gangestad & Simpson's model of the evolution of within-sex differences in reproductive strategies requires a degree of female choice that probably did not exist because of male coercion. We argue as well that the tradeoff between current and future reproduction accounts for more of the within-sex differences in reproductive strategies than the “good-genes-good parenting” tradeoff they propose.
A randomised controlled trial of cognitive — behavioural therapy (CBT) for people with medication-resistant psychosis showed improvements in overall symptomatology after nine months of treatment; good outcome was strongly predicted by a measure of cognitive flexibility concerning delusions. The present paper presents a follow-up evaluation 18 months after baseline.
Forty-seven (78% of original n=60) participants were available for follow-up at 18 months, and were reassessed on all the original outcome measures (see Part I). An economic evaluation was also completed.
Those in the CBT treatment group showed a significant and continuing improvement in Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale scores, whereas the control group did not change from baseline. Delusional distress and the frequency of hallucinations were also significantly reduced in the CBT group. The costs of CB Tappear to have been offset by reductions in service utilisation and associated costs during follow-up.
Improvement in overall symptoms was maintained in the CBT group 18 months after baseline and nine months after intensive therapy was completed. CBT may be a specific and cost-effective intervention in medication-resistant psychosis.
The macroscopic properties of many materials are controlled by the structure and chemistry at grain boundaries. A basic understanding of the structure-property relationship requires a technique which probes both composition and chemical bonding on an atomic scale. High-resolution Z-contrast imaging in the scanning transmission electron microscope (STEM) forms an incoherent image in which changes in atomic structure and composition across an interface can be interpreted directly without the need for preconceived atomic structure models (1). Since the Z-contrast image is formed by electrons scattered through high angles, parallel detection electron energy loss spectroscopy (PEELS) can be used simultaneously to provide complementary chemical information on an atomic scale (2). The fine structure in the PEEL spectra can be used to investigate the local electronic structure and the nature of the bonding across the interface (3). In this paper we use the complimentary techniques of high resolution Zcontrast imaging and PEELS to investigate the atomic structure and chemistry of a 25° symmetric tilt boundary in a bicrystal of the electroceramic SrTiO3.
The speciation of UO22+ and UO22+/ TBP mixtures has been investigated in solution and intercalated with the reference smectite clay SAz-1 using x-ray absorption, Raman, andluminescence spectroscopies. Neither aquated UO22+ nor its TBP complex undergoes any detectable changes in uranium oxidation state on intercalation. Further, at the pH values employed in this work, there is no evidence for hydrolysis of the uranium species to generate dimeric or higher order uranium oligomers. However, we do find indications that the structures of the solution complexes are altered on intercalation, particularly for the UO22+TBP system and for more dilute UO22+/aqueous systems. In addition, several lines of evidence suggest that, at the loading levels used in this study, the uranyl species is interacting with two or more spectroscopically distinguishable sites on SAz-1.